A Holiday Message From Your Fire Safety Team
Dear Members of the Columbia Community:
Facilities and Operations wishes you a happy and healthy holiday season. As you celebrate, please remember these safe practices when decorating for the holidays:
• Natural holiday wreaths and trees, both live and cut, are prohibited from all indoor academic buildings, undergraduate residential buildings as well as public areas in graduate and faculty apartment housing.
• You may decorate your artificial trees, but be sure to follow the manufacturer's warnings regarding the use of electric lights. Do not string lights on metal trees.
• Unplug or turn off decorative lights at night and when the area is unoccupied. Only low-temperature mini-lights are permitted, and they must be UL approved.
• With very few exceptions, candles, oil lamps, incense, and other flame-producing items are strictly prohibited throughout the campus.
• Don't place trees or other decorations in exit corridors, and never block emergency egress from any room.
• Securing decorations to fire sprinklers, smoke detectors, or other fire equipment is prohibited. It could hamper the equipment's operation or inadvertently set off an alarm.
• As always, be sure not to block fire equipment, such as fire extinguishers and fire alarm pull stations.
• We discourage the use of extension cords. If you must use them, make sure that they bear the UL-approved label and that they are of adequate wire gauge. Don't use frayed or broken cords. Remember to unplug extension cords before you leave for an extended period.
• Don't run electrical cords across work surfaces or under rugs. Keep them out of the way, so they do not become a tripping hazard.
• Please remove all decorations before leaving campus for the holidays.
If a fire should occur, remember RACE:
• Rescue/alert everyone in area of fire.
• Activate the building fire alarm. Report the fire by calling Public Safety and the FDNY (911)
• Close doors as you leave.
• Evacuate the area or floor of fire origin.
For more information on holiday fire safety, please visit www.nyc.gov/html/fdny/pdf/safety/fire_safety_education/2014/winter_fire_safety_english.pdf.
Director of Fire Safety