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Fire Safety

Overview: 

The Higher Education Opportunity Act became law in August 2008, requiring all United States Academic Institutions to produce an annual Fire Safety Report outlining fire safety practices, standards, and all fire related on-campus statistics.  The following public disclosure report details all information required by this law as it relates to The Colorado College.

General Statement of Colorado College Student Resident Housing:

At Colorado College all Student Residence Halls are covered with integrated fire sprinkler systems and fire alarm systems which are monitored 24 hours/day, seven days/week by the Campus Safety Department and SimplexGrinnell Monitoring.  These buildings also have fire extinguishers, emergency lighting, exit signs and exit doors.  The only buildings that are not covered with a monitored sprinkler system or fire alarm system is the Interfaith House, Synergy House, CC Inn, 1002 N. Weber, 1010 N. Weber, and 233 San Rafael.  However, these buildings are equipped with smoke detectors and fire extinguishers.      

Fire Safety Improvements and Upgrades:

The Colorado College Campus Safety Department along with a Certified Independent Company annually reviews the fire systems in the Residence Halls and Academic Buildings and will make upgrades, repairs or revisions when problems are identified.  Campus Safety also conducts three additional Fire/Safety Inspections in Residence Hall throughout the year.  Residence Hall Staff also conduct random Fire/Safety Inspections throughout the school year.

Fire Safety Statistics

Fire Safety Systems

Residence Hall Fire Drills and Training:

Fire drills are held once a semester for each student residence hall.  Fire drills are mandatory supervised evacuations of a building in the event of a fire. The fire drill is scheduled with the Campus Safety Department and the Residence Hall Staff and announced at least 48 hours in advance.  Everyone in the building must participate in the fire drill to the greatest extent possible.  Evacuation route maps are posted in each resident room showing where the closest egress route is located.  One should utilize the designated fire escapes and/or all recommended emergency procedures when the fire alarm sounds.   

All residence hall staff receives intensive and comprehensive fire safety training from the Colorado Springs Fire Department at the beginning of the school year.  In-turn the staff provides basic fire safety instructions to all students living in residence halls during the orientation at the beginning of the school year.

Basic fire safety instruction is also offered to all new employees during the New Employee Orientation program.  All existing employees are provided periodic fire safety tips through the College’s E-mail system. 

Fire Log:

A fire log is maintained at the Campus Safety Department which is available to the public during normal business hours.  This log records by the date that the fire was reported and any fire that occurred in an on-campus facility.  This log includes the nature, date, time and general location of each fire.

Fire Log 2009

Fire Log 2010

Fire Log 2011

Fire Safety:

Tampering with or misusing fire and safety equipment, such as fire alarms, fire extinguishers, smoke alarms, and exit signs, or creating a false alarm pose a serious threat to life and property and will result in a fine and/or a possible suspension.  The college reserves the right to take disciplinary action through the appropriate college channels and/or local law enforcement agencies.

The following policies exist for safety purposes.  Violations of these policies may include disciplinary action and life safety fines.

  • Never tamper with smoke detector.  If there is a question about whether or not a detector is working properly immediately consult a residential life staff member or Campus Safety.  If a smoke detector starts beeping occasionally, and there is not heat or smoke source, it probably needs a new battery.  Contact the front desk or staff member on duty.  After hours contact Campus Safety.  NEVER REMOVE A SMOKE DETECTOR!
  • Door Closer mechanisms must remain on doors at all times.
  • Don’t abuse fire safety equipment.  Report all no-functioning equipment to residence life staff.
  • Keep hallways free of debris and personal items.
  • Do not hang anything on the ceiling or drape materials that can cover or block lights, or smoke detectors or sprinklers.
  • Do not stack belongings or furniture where it can block the flow from a sprinkler.
  • Do not store items where they may be blocking a fire exit route.  This includes windows, window sills, and hallways.
  • Do not tamper with or spray fire extinguishers.  This will cause the release of a chemical that can set off the building fire alarm.
  • Do not burn any flammable items.
  • Do not use or store flammable substances, such as gasoline, propane, sterno, and cleaning fluids on or near residential life areas.  This includes camping stoves and flammable supplies.
  • Do not overload electrical outlets.  The college recommends only one appliance per outlet, especially in the older historical buildings. 
  • Do not splice electrical wires or remove any outlet plates or light switches.
  • Fire exit doors must remain closed when they are not being used as an exit in an emergency.  Residents are responsible for keeping door closed and unpropped.
  • Do not place Microfridges or refrigerators in closets.  Allow for proper air circulation behind the unit.
  • Do not leave electrical appliances unattended when turned on.
  • Extension cords or decorative lights may not be routed under rugs or carpets, through doorways, or in any manner that could present a fall or trip hazard or impede egress. 
  • Dispose of trash as quickly as possible.
  • Flammable decorations, such as live or excessive greenery, excessive amounts of paper, and large paper decorations are prohibited. 
  • Keep all items at least three feet away from heating units.
  • No lofts may be built or used in student housing, other then those provided.
  • Candles, incense and hookahs are not permitted.
  • Open flames are not permitted on campus unless written approval has been obtained in advance from campus safety and environmental health and safety. 

Appliances and Electrical Equipment:

Sharing a residential community includes sharing the utility capabilities of that facility.  Outlets and overall electrical capacity in all student housing areas can easily be overloaded if misused, especially in some of the more historic buildings.  As a result students are advised to use caution and limit their use of electrical equipment in the residential buildings to minimize risk of harm to themselves and the community. 

  • All electrical items must be Underwriters Laboratory (UL) listed and in good operating condition.
  • Appliances may not have open flames or exposed heating elements and must be rated for 1,500 watts (maximum power draw) and/or approved for 15-amp circuit.
  • Permitted personal electronics are computers, stereo/radio, printer, razor, TV, hair dryer, fan, small lamp, cell phone charger, alarm clock, answering machines.
  • The only permitted cooking related items are coffee pots, hot pots and popcorn poppers.  All these items must have an automatic shut-off feature in use.
  • Each outlet can draw up to 20-amps.  Student should spread out appliances within a room or apartment to lessen the load on individual outlets.
  • Microfridges, hair dryers and other such appliances should be plugged directly into the outlet rather than a power strip.  If your outlet is a two-prong outlet, you can purchase an adapter at a local hardware store.
  • Iron must have a 10-minute automatic shut off mechanism and should be used in common areas on an ironing board.
  • Do not leave items such as irons, microwaves and ovens unmonitored while they are in use.
  • The same standards apply to the student apartments, except that they may have additional cooking items that meet the above standards in their kitchen.  Permitted items are; blenders, larger refrigerators, toasters, microwave ovens, ovens and electric grills.

Prohibited Items:

Any item that was not mentioned above as approved is prohibited.  Examples include: electric blankets, sun and heat lamps, torchiere-style halogen lamps or other lamps at risk of causing fire, crock pots, hot plates, kegerators, toasters, grills, etc.

Smoking Policy:

Smoking is prohibited in any building owned by Colorado College.  This includes, but is not limited to, any classrooms, laboratories, library, offices, administrative buildings, residential buildings, dining facilities, recreational complex, etc. 

Fire Alarms:

If a fire alarm occurs, the Colorado Springs Fire Department and Campus Safety will respond to the affected building.  Every student residential building is connected directly to Campus Safety and SimplexGrinnell Monitoring except Interfaith, Synergy, CC Inn, 1010 Weber, 1002 Weber, and 223 San Rafael,  Students in these buildings should follow the same evacuation procedures when smoke detectors activate; however they should also call Campus Safety immediately from the outside of the buildings.  If an actual fire is observed, call 911 first and then Campus Safety, ext. 6911 (Emergency Number)  

When a fire or other evacuation alarm sounds, every person must follow these procedures:

  • Take your keys and CC ID with you. 
  • Carefully and calmly exit via the closet fire exit route.  DO NOT USE THE ELEVATORS.
  • Check each door for heat or hazard prior to opening.  If your door feels hot or the exit path is hazardous, remain in the building.
  • If there is a designated fire exit through your window, use it.
  • Leave room door closed.
  • Stay low to the floor and cover your mouth with a wet cloth to make breathing easier in smoky conditions.
  • If you notice that individuals cannot negotiate the exit, move them laterally away from any obvious danger to a safe place.  Person with disabilities, such as those who cannot walk or be assisted down the stairs, may elect to remain in the building until emergency personnel arrive.
  • Report the status and location of anyone remaining in the building to campus responders (Campus Safety) and public officials (Police, Fire).  Repeat this message often.
  • Stay together at a safe distance (50 to 100 yards, upwind) from the building until Campus Safety indicated you can return to the building.

If You Are Trapped Or Unable To Exit:

  • Stay calm and take steps to protect yourself.
  • Close the room door(s).
  • Put cloth at the bottom of the door(s).
  • Call 911 (9-911from a campus phone) and stay on the line and indicate your location.
  • If possible, move to a room with an outside window.
  • Stay where rescuers can see you through the window and wave a light-colored item to attract their attention.
  • If possible open the window at the top and bottom.  Be ready to shut the window quickly if smoke rushes in.
  • Be patient.  The rescue of occupants of large structures could take time.

In The Event Of A Fire:

  • Alert others in the immediate area and activate the nearest fire alarm on your way out.
  • Call 911.  Then call Campus Safety, ext. 6911 (Emergency Number).
  • Don’t fight a fire if you have not been trained or are unsure about what type of fire extinguisher to use.  Most portable extinguishers are appropriate for only small contained fires, such as a fire in a wastebasket.
  • Remember to never fight a spreading or growing fire and never block your escape. 
  • Close doors to help prevent the fire from spreading.
  • Advise emergency personnel the size and location of the fire.
  • Do not re-enter the building that is on fire.
  • Advise emergency personnel if you know that someone is in the building.

Note:  Any fires that were quickly extinguished or any evidence of recent fires must be reported immediately to Campus Safety who will in turn document the incident as required. 

Definitions:

Fire – Any instance of open flame or other burning in a place not intended to contain the burning in an uncontrolled manner.

False Alarms – The fire alarm system was intentionally activated when no fire or danger existed, or the system malfunctioned.

Unwanted Alarms – The fire alarm system was activated as it was designed to do, though the ultimate cause of the alarm was false, for example, dust entering a smoke detector.

Fire-Related Injury – Any instance in which a person is injured as a result of a fire, including an injury sustained from a natural or accidental cause while involved in fire control, attempting rescue, or escaping from the dangers of the fire.  The term person may include students, faculty, staff, visitors, firefighters, Campus Safety or any other individuals.

Fire-Related Death – Any instance in which a person is killed as a result of a fire, including death resulting from a natural or accidental cause while involved in fire control, attempting rescue or escaping from the dangers of a fire, or death that occur within 1 year of injuries sustained as a results of the fire.

Fire Safety System – Any mechanism or system related to the detection of a fire, the warning resulting from a fire, or the control of a fire including sprinkler or other fire extinguishing systems, fire detection devices, stand-alone smoke alarms, devices that alert one to the presence of a fire, such as horns, bells, or strobe lights, smoke-control and reduction mechanism, and fire doors and wall that reduce the spread of a fire.

Value of Property Damage – The estimated value of the loss of the structure and contents, in terms of cost of replacement in like kind and quantity, including contents damaged by fire, related damages caused by smoke, water and overhaul, however it does not include indirect loss such as business interruption. 

Helpful Telephone Numbers:

Campus Safety Emergency Number ext. 6911
Campus Safety Non-Emergency Number ext. 6707
Colorado Springs Police Emergency Number
    (emergency from campus phones)
911
9-911
Colorado Springs Police Non-Emergency Number 444-7000
Colorado Springs Fire Department Emergency Number
   (emergency from campus phones)
911
9-911
Colorado Springs Fire Department Non-Emergency Number 385-5950