Fires in universities can consist of two major types. The first type of fire is the fire that is confined to some specific equipment or some specific objects. The second kind of fire is one that is not confined. The confined building fires in the university are those that are limited in their scope and mainly to noncombustible containers. In most instances, the confined fires rarely cause any serious injury to students or staff members or large content losses. The confined fires are expected to have a minor significant due to the flame damage on the property. The non-confined fires are the ki9nds of fires that cause the most damage in the case of their occurrence. In the university, however, about 95% of all the fires occur in the dormitories and other dormitory related residences.
There are various causes of university fires. The major cause is however cooking. There are many incidences when a student takes their time to cook their food. In most instances the practice is illegal, but the students tend to ignore the major warnings anyway. Fires have also been known to have been started intentionally by some students due to some kind of malicious activity. In places that experience cold temperatures, fires have been caused by heating equipment that has been provided to the students. This kind of fires may start intentionally or due to the faulty nature of some of the heating equipment. Some cases of fire are however due to carelessness and ignorance.
It is vital that students should be in a position to deal with any instances of fire suppose it occurs in their dormitories. Students thereby need to learn the fire safety procedures. What I believe is the best procedure that has been done by many universities is the introduction of the state of the art fire alarm systems that are addressable in all the undergraduate student apartments and in all the residence halls. The alarms installed also have several features that include; zoned alarms. What is vital with the zoned alarms is that the students are in a position to comprehend or know precisely the area that is on fire or the affected building. Furthermore, when a particular zone is engulfed in a fire in the university, then the different fires in the different zones would be sounded, and thus, the students would be alarmed and appropriately notified.
The other key feature of the state of the art alarms is the addressability of the alarms. In this kind of alarms, there are specific messages that can be broadcasted to the students especially in the areas that have been affected by the fires. When the messages are broadcasted to the different areas, then the information gets to the students in time making them aware of the specific areas that have been affected thereby reducing any instances of tension and panic. Furthermore, false fire opportunities are greatly diminished.
In the case that there is an event of a fire in the various universities, then the installation of the automatic sprinkler systems come in handy. The automatic sprinkler systems consist of the networking of piping, alarm, detection devices and sprinkler heads. All these various devices work together hand in hand. When they sense any kind of heat, these devices start sprinkling water thereby extinguishing the fire or managing the growth of the fire. This kind of system is effective and efficient in that it gives warning to the existence of fire while at the same time applying water to the area that is burning. The other advantage that the automatic sprinkler system has on the university students in their residential hall is that the level of smoke is reduced, and the amount of heat in the room is also significantly reduced thereby reducing the possible harm to the students or the individuals residing in a particular area.
It is also vital that all the equipment that are used to deal with a fire in the university are frequently tested. This is to ensure that they are in proper working conditions and that they are ready to be used at any time. Additionally, it is vital that some of the equipment such as smoke detectors are constantly checked since faulty smoke detectors can cause false alarms or even fail to function when they are needed.
Students have to be constantly trained on how to use various fire equipment and the procedures that they should follow in the case of an occurrence of fire. The universities that have introduced an emergency action plans have to be seen as the leaders in their bid to ensure that student is safe at the university. It is not only the students at the universities who have to deal with incidences of fire. Every member of the university fraternity has to be taught the different procedures and strategies to combat the fires. Once there has been an occurrence of a fire at some point, there is need to conduct research as to the causes of such fires and strategies implemented to prevent such fires from occurring in the future.
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