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Fire Safety/

Smoke Detectors

By law, every apartment must have at least one electric or battery-operated smoke and carbon monoxide detector installed properly. Smoke detectors may be mounted on the wall or the ceiling. If mounted on the wall, they must be placed between 4 and 12 inches from the ceiling; if mounted on the ceiling, they must be at least 4 inches from the wall. Mounting a smoke detector on the ceiling of small alcoves between rooms, where there is little airflow, is not recommended.


It is recommended that the battery be replaced once a year (a good day to replace it is when we switch to daylight saving time).


For further fire protection, we recommend that you purchase a small dry chemical fire extinguisher for your kitchen. They do not cost much and can be very handy when you least expect it.


In the event of a fire, please take the following steps:

If the fire is in your apartment …

  • Close the door to the room where the fire is and leave the apartment.

  • Make sure everyone leaves the apartment with you.

  • Take your keys.

  • Close, but do not lock, the apartment door.

  • Alert people on your floor by knocking on their doors on your way to the exit.

  • Call 911 once you reach a safe location. Do not assume the fire has been reported unless firefighters are on the scene.

  • Meet the members of your household at a pre-determined location outside the building. Notify the firefighters if anyone is unaccounted for.

  • Avoid panic — staying calm can be life-saving.


If the fire is not in your apartment …

  • Feel your apartment door and doorknob for heat. If they are not hot, open the door slightly and check the hallway for smoke, heat or fire.

  • Exit the apartment and building if you can safely do so, following the instructions above for a fire in your apartment.

  • If the hallway or stairwell is not safe because of smoke, heat, or fire and you have access to a fire escape, use it to exit the building.

  • If you cannot use the stairs or the fire escape, call 911 and tell them your address, floor, apartment number and the number of people in your apartment.

  • Seal the doors to your apartment with wet towels or sheets, and seal air ducts or other openings where smoke may enter.

  • Open windows a few inches at top and bottom unless flames and smoke are coming from below.

  • Do not break any windows.

  • If conditions in the apartment appear life-threatening, open a window and wave a towel or sheet to attract the attention of firefighters.

  • If smoke conditions worsen before help arrives, get down on the floor and take short breaths through your nose.

  • Avoid panic — staying calm can be life-saving.

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