The University of Akron emphasizes the importance of fire safety, particularly among its resident students. However, because the possibility for residence hall fires exists, The University of Akron takes a number of precautions to protect the approximately 2,300 students who currently live in ten residence halls.
All fires should be reported immediately to the City of Akron Fire Department, University of Akron Police Department (911 or 330-972-2911) or residence hall staff. Upon receipt of a fire report, The University of Akron Police Department immediately will dispatch officers and Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety personnel to investigate fire reports on campus and route calls to the City of Akron Fire Department as necessary.
Upon receiving notice of a fire by way of an announcement or activation of the fire alarm system, occupants immediately should evacuate the building using the closest available exit. Elevators should not be used. Once out of the building, individuals should assemble at their pre-designated meeting point to await further instructions.
Each floor has a clearly marked location where students who require physical assistance to evacuate residence halls should go to obtain evacuation assistance. Students must call University Police at 330-972-2911 to secure assistance during an evacuation. This number also is posted on each residence hall floor.
All residence halls are equipped with a fire alarm system. All alarm systems function and undergo rigorous testing and documentation each year. Fire safety specialists activate the alarm systems annually and inspect and clean the system components on an annual basis.
Fire extinguishers (ABC type) are in all residence halls and spaced in accordance with the Ohio Fire Code.
All residence hall rooms have flame-retardant mattresses and window shades. Public areas have carpets and drapery that meet maximum flammability standards.
Campus police can unlock all student room and building doors in an emergency to maximize evacuation and rescue. In addition, the University’s regional campus and center buildings are equipped with "Knox Security Key Boxes." These high security boxes contain building master keys for use by the firefighters who come into a residence hall. The boxes are opened by a key that is on each fire truck. The sub master keys in these "Knox Boxes" enable firefighters to quickly unlock building doors in order to maximize evacuation and rescue or to fight an active fire.
Four locations, owned by the University but not operated by Residence Life and Housing, have fire safety systems in place, but do not have suppression systems. These locations include: 478 Orchard Street; Hower House; Tau Kappa Epsilon Housing; and Phi Kappa Psi Housing. Further information concerning each residence hall and housing facility fire safety system is available on the chart contained in Appendix C of this report.
The University of Akron restricts use of any item that produces an open flame or heating surface in residence hall student rooms. Candles, incense, and hot plates are among the restricted items. The full list of prohibited items is available in the Residence Life Handbook, which is at: http://www.uakron.edu/reslife/docs/2016-17Handbook.pdf Fire safety information is contained in Section 6.
All residence halls are non-smoking, including vaping; this includes all student rooms.
All resident students receive a fire inspection checklist during move-in, which helps students identify fire safety risks and recommends safe practices. Fire safety information also is provided through floor meetings to all resident students. Additional safety information can be found at the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety (EOHS) Web site: http://www.uakron.edu/safety/eohs/fire.dot
The University of Akron conducts fire drills once each semester for its residence halls and as required by Ohio’s Fire Code for all other campus buildings. During the 2019 calendar year, the University conducted 27 fire drills among its residence halls. The University also conducted drills for academic support buildings as required by law. EOHS also provides on-site fire training in the residence halls upon request.
Each floor has a clearly marked location where students who require physical assistance to evacuate residence halls should go to obtain evacuation assistance. Students must call University Police at 330-972-2911 to secure assistance during an evacuation. This number is also posted on each residence hall floor.
Emergency Action Plan placards, which detail emergency guidelines for different types of possible emergencies, including fire, are posted throughout each residence hall and provided to each resident’s room.
Residence hall video display boards provide safety messaging throughout each academic term.
Cool a Burn
Use Electricity Safely
When Not to Fight a Fire
How to Use a Fire Extinguisher
The following are general statements for the operation of a fire extinguisher; however,
all extinguishers are different. Users should be trained on how to use a fire extinguisher prior to use to ensure that the correct type of extinguisher is used and that it is used properly.
The University of Akron continually strives to improve campus fire safety. All new building construction and renovations are completed in accordance with applicable fire codes and the University is exploring opportunities to further expand its Network Fire Alarm Mass Notification System.