Fire Safety

Annual Fire Safety Report & Residence Hall Fire Safety Policies - 2014

Campus Fire Safety Right-to-Know Act became federal law with the passage of the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008. The new law requires colleges and universities that maintain on-campus housing to compile fire data, report the data to the federal government, and publish an annual fire safety report that gives students, parents and the public current information about fires in on-campus housing. The following report has been prepared and made available to the Wesleyan University community in accordance with the Higher Education Opportunity Act and the regulations by the U.S. Department of Education. 

Fire Reporting Policy

To report fires on campus call the Office of Public Safety at 860/685-3333 or Campus Ext. 3333 or dial 911 from any campus phone. If you also dial 911 directly from a cell phone, you will connect you to 911 Central Dispatch.  

Manual Pull Stations

Pulling the handle of a manual pull station activates the building fire alarm system in the event of an emergency. The pull station should only be used if there is an active fire or a smell of smoke, and the automatic fire alarm system has not yet activated. Evacuate the building immediately and call Public Safety or 911 to report the incident. Pull stations are located at every egress door in buildings that have an automatic fire alarm system. 

Fire Evacuation Policy

In the event of a fire alarm activation, you must evacuate the building by the closest exit and call 911 or Public Safety 860/685-3333 or Ext. 3333 from a campus phone to report the details of the incident if they are known. Once you have exited the building report to the designated meeting area for your particular location. Resident Advisors (RA’s) and House Managers (HM’s) are required to communicate to all of the residents where the designated meeting area is for the buildings they are responsible for.  Individuals should wait and must follow the instructions of Middletown Fire Department and/or Public Safety officers. No one may re-enter the building until directed to do so by Middletown Fire Department and/or Public Safety officers.

Fire Alarm and Evacuation Procedures

When a system connected fire alarm is activated, it is able to communicate in one of the two ways:

  1. The alarm sends a signal to the fire alarm monitoring company, which is then responsible for notifying the Middletown Fire Department and Public Safety, which is staffed 24/7
  2. or the alarm system notifies MFD directly. Officers from Public Safety will promptly respond to the scene to aid in evacuation and safety procedures. 
These procedures should be followed each time you hear an alarm:
  • Do not ignore the alarm. Everyone must evacuate.
  • Remain calm and proceed with an orderly evacuation
  • Leave the building immediately with your shoes, another garment (such as a jacket), and your keys.
  • Find the closest exit and go to your designated meeting location
  • Report any information you may have about the cause of the alarm activation to the Fire Department and/or Public Safety
  • Let the Fire Department and/or Public Safety know if someone that was in your building is not outside
  • Await further instructions from the Fire Department and/or Public Safety
  • Do not re-enter the building until the Fire Department and/or Public Safety direct you to do so. Silencing of the alarm does not imply the emergency is over. 

Fire Safety Policies

Do not cover, or in any way tamper with smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, pull stations, horn/strobe devices, sprinkler heads or pipes, or fire extinguishers. There is a $500 fine for tampering with any fire life safety equipment.

The following items are not allowed in resident rooms or common areas, including porches, because of the fire and life safety risk:

  • Candles  - even decorative candles are prohibited
  • Incense - all forms including incense sticks (or "joss sticks"), cones, and pyramids are prohibited.
  • Used smoking materials - no smoking within 25' of any university building
  • Ungrounded extension cords (two-prong type); only grounded (three-prong type) extension cords and fused power strips are permitted
  • Plug adapters - 3 prong to 2 prong
  • Tapestries hanging on walls or ceilings; see definitions of prohibited items for more information.
  • Halogen lamps, both standing and desk lamps
  • Portable electric or space heaters
  • Cooking Appliances - which includes anything with a heating element, such as hot plate, electric kettle, electric frying pan or wok, toaster or toaster oven, waffle maker, electric grill, popcorn popper, rice cooker, etc. (Cooking appliances are allowed in apartment, wood frame and program house kitchens)
  • Coffee makers and water kettles are only allowed if they have an automatic shut-off.
  • Charcoal or Gas Grills are not allowed in any university-owned houses or residences, or on porches or balconies at any time (i.e. grills cannot be stored on porches)
  • Vaporizers - the type that uses a ceramic heating element to diffuse aromatherapy herbs and oils
  • Kerosene or propane lamps, or any combustible fuel or devices
  • Open burning - bonfires, camp fires, fire pits, etc. (Also prohibited by City of Middletown ordinance)
  • Explosives, ammunition, incendiary devices and fireworks ($500 fine)
  • Mercury thermometers – due to the potential environmental hazard and significant clean-up costs associated with a mercury spill or contamination, mercury thermometers are prohibited in any student residence
  • Smoke/fog machines – a device emits a dense vapor that appears similar to fog or smoke.

Fire Safety Inspections

Campus Fire Safety has adopted a graduated fine system for this academic year. 1st violation will be a $50 fine, 2nd violation will be a $100 fine and a referral to SJB, 3rd violation will be $200 and a referral to SJB. All violations thereafter will continue to be doubled. (SJB- Student Judicial Board). Candles, incense and extension cords will not be returned; contact Campus Fire Safety for other confiscated items. A receipt will be given to you, or left in your room, notifying you of any violations and/or fines.

Fire Drills

Supervised fire drills are conducted in each residence hall 2 times a year (once a semester). All drills are supervised by a Middletown Fire Marshal, Residential Life staff, and Campus Fire Safety staff. 

Fire Safety Education and Training Programs

All residents are required to attend a meeting in their residence hall at the beginning of the school year to discuss fire safety, fire evacuation plans, and rules and regulations of the residence hall. 

All students sign a housing contract which states that Fire Safety Guidelines are also part of your Housing Contract. 

Students are encouraged to review the Code of Non-Academic Conduct, which can be found online in the Student Handbook.

Head Residents (HRs), Resident Advisors (RAs), House Managers (HMs), and Community Advisors (CAs) who are supervised by the professional Area Coordinator (AC) staff go through several weeks of training in August, before the academic year, including training in fire safety procedures and policies. 

Fire Safety Seminars for students that have received a fine for a fire safety violation, they are able to attend a fire safety seminar in lieu of payment of up to $50 of fines. Seminars are done by Campus Fire Safety Department in conjunction with Residential Life. Seminars cover topics such as fire safety policies and procedures as well as giving instructions on how to use a fire extinguisher. 

Fire Extinguisher Training module- Campus Fire Safety Department offers training on how to properly use a fire extinguisher by using a training module created by BullEx. This training is offered to Students, Faculty, and Staff members. The module allows them to use a fire extinguisher to put out an actual fire and is offered many times throughout the academic year.   

Fire Alarm Activation Log

Department of Campus Fire Safety in conjunction with the Public Safety Department maintains the records of all alarm activations and fires that occur on campus. The log contains the following information: date, location name, and address, type of alarm, cause/reason, contact information, notes, injuries, and value of property damage. The log is organized by the date the alarm occurred. Public Safety is responsible for writing up a report and emailing it to the Campus Fire Safety Department where the data is then entered into the log. 

Fire Safety Systems

All Fire Safety systems information is held on a database and maintained by the Campus Fire Safety Department. All residence halls have a fire alarm system that report to a monitoring company or directly to the Middletown Fire Department. A portion of the wood frame properties have a sprinkler system and fire alarm system that is monitored, a complete list of those locations can be found in Campus Fire Safety department office. All other wood frame houses have local smoke detectors in all bedrooms and common spaces. All residential buildings have fire extinguishers in kitchen and mechanical spaces. 

The following Residence Halls have monitored fire alarms and sprinkler systems:

Location Name Location # Address
Bennet Hall 35 Foss   Hill Drive
Butterfield A 25 Lawn   Avenue
Butterfield B 20 Huber   Avenue
Butterfield C 50 Huber   Avenue
Clark Hall 268 Church   Street
Fauver Apartments 19 Foss   Hill Drive
Foss 1 - Westco 18 Foss   Hill Drive
Foss 2 - Westco 18 Foss   Hill Drive
Foss 3 - Westco 18 Foss   Hill Drive
Foss 4 - Westco 18 Foss   Hill Drive
Foss 5 - Nicolsen 57 Foss   Hill Drive
Foss 6 - Nicolsen 57 Foss   Hill Drive
Foss 7 - Nicolsen 57 Foss   Hill Drive
Foss 8 - Hewitt 31 McConaughy Drive
Foss 9 - Hewitt 31 McConaughy   Drive
Foss 10 - Hewitt 31 McConaughy   Drive
200 Church   Street
High Rise 110 Church   Street
Low Rise A 233 William   Street
Low Rise B 233 William   Street
Low Rise C 233 William   Street
Low Rise D 233 William   Street
Low Rise E 233 William   Street

Fire Statistics  

Calendar   Year: 2014
Location Cause/Reason  Fire Related Deaths Fire Related Injuries Value of property damage
200 High St Reckless   burning 0 0 $1,500.00
Butterfield B Minor   Fire – Trash can fire due to cigarettes 0 0 $0.00
84 Home Ave Minor Fire - Hood fan caught fire  0 0 $150.00
267 C Court St Fire   – stove –  plastic 0 0 $500.00
59 Pearl St Minor   Fire – oven – dirty 0 0 $150.00
142 Cross St Minor   Fire – Halogen lamp 0 0 $0.00
Calendar   Year: 2013
Location Cause/Reason  Fire Related Deaths Fire Related Injuries Value of   property damage
High Rise  Minor   Fire – Trash can fire due to cigarettes 0 0 $0.00
269 B Pine St Minor   Fire – Trash can fire due to cigarettes 0 0 $0.00
269 A Pine St Minor Fire – Olive oil on stove caught on fire 0 0 $0.00
107 Cross St Minor   fire -  plastic on burner 0 0 $0.00
Calendar   Year: 2012
Location Cause/Reason  Fire Related Deaths Fire Related Injuries Value of property damage
High Rise  Minor Fire - Hood fan caught fire  0 0 $400.00
Bennet Hall  Minor Fire - student lit papers on fire 0 0 $300.00
273 Pine St Minor Fire - trash can - ash from smoking 0 0 $0.00
Alpha Delt Minor Fire - student set small trash can on fire 0 0 $0.00
58 Fountain Ave Fire - Electrical - Stove 0 0 $3,000.00
Calendar   Year: 2011
Location  Cause/Reason  Fire Related Deaths Fire Related Injuries  Value of property damage 
132 High St Minor   Fire - Camping stove caught fire 0 0 $0.00
230 Washington St Fire   - Stove fire 0 0 $3,000.00
Calendar   Year: 2010
Location  Cause/Reason  Fire Related Deaths Fire Related Injuries  Value of property damage 
65 A Pearl St Minor   fire- electrical fire- ITS equipment 0 0 $0.00
200 High St Minor   fire - trash container due to cigarette 0 0 $0.00
344 Washington St Fire-   small flames - hot water heater  0 0 $2,235.00
Fauver Apartments Fire   - Kitchen fire due to cooking oil 0 0 $500.00
Calendar   Year: 2009
Location  Cause/Reason  Fire Related Deaths Fire Related Injuries  Value of property damage 
Clark Hall Fire-   dryer vent-walls caught fire in Laundry Rm 0 0 $6,000.00
200 Church St Minor   fire - trash container due to cigarette  0 0 $0.00
Foss 10 - Hewitt Minor   fire - Scarf thrown onto lamp  0 0 $0.00
128 A Church St Minor   fire - Oil in pan caught on fire. 0 0 $0.00
128 B Church St Minor   fire - Oil in pan caught on fire. 0 0 $0.00
High Rise  Minor   fire - Sticker left on new pan  0 0 $0.00
High Rise Fire   - Put cardboard pizza box in oven 0 0 $400.00
Foss 3 - Westco Fire-   Wood to close to vent fan caught fire 0 0 $150.00
Low Rise C Fire   - plastic kettle put on stove caught fire 0 0 $470.00
Calendar   Year: 2008
Location  Cause/Reason  Fire Related Deaths Fire Related Injuries  Value of property damage 
132 High St Minor   fire - kettle left unattended on stove 0 0 $0.00
Calendar   Year: 2007
Location  Cause/Reason  Fire Related Deaths Fire Related Injuries  Value of property damage 
1 B Vine St Fire   - potholder left on stove 0 0 $400.00
42 Fountain Ave Minor   fire - cheese in toaster oven 0 0 $0.00
Fauver Apartments Minor   fire -  plastic on burner 0 0 $0.00
1 C Vine St Minor   fire - Paper Fire from incense 0 0 $0.00
15 Fountain Ave Minor   fire - Oven fire/ unknown cause 0 0 $0.00

 

Plans for future improvements in fire safety

Wesleyan University will continue to upgrade and install more fire alarms and sprinkler systems on an annual basis. Ongoing fire safety education will be provided to students, faculty and staff by the Campus Fire Safety Department as well as the Middletown Fire Department. Wesleyan will also continue to offer ongoing training opportunities to the MFD with use the use of our buildings.