2.0 Emergency Action and Fire Prevention Plan
- This section contains general emergency response procedures to be followed
in the absence of department- or facility-specific procedures. The supervisor
or person responsible for the area where an emergency occurs is responsible
for investigating all emergency incidents and reporting them to Occupational
Safety and Health Services.
2.1 Building Evacuations
- There are several types of actual and potential emergency situations
that might necessitate a building evacuation including fire, explosion,
chemical spill, gas leak, terrorist threats, etc. The evacuation alarm
is primarily intended for initiating a general evacuation during fire emergencies.
During emergencies other than fire, the possibility that occupants could
enter a danger area (e.g., chemical spill in exit path, potential explosion
area, exposure to gunman, etc.) while exiting the building should be considered
before initiating the evacuation alarm. In those instances where a general
evacuation is not safe, the evacuation will have to be conducted room by
room in buildings that do not have a public address system.
2.1.1 Physically Disabled Occupants
- It is the responsibility of faculty to notify students in each class
of the need to identify themselves (in private, if desired) if they will
need assistance during a building evacuation and to establish an evacuation
plan for those identified. Such evacuation plans may include the buddy
system and the use of safe refuge areas—places relatively
resistant to smoke and heat within a building (for example a sprinkler
protected room or hallway, or a stairway landing) where an occupant could
wait until help arrives to assist in an evacuation. If a safe refuge area
is to be used it is essential to assign, at the time of the emergency,
a specific individual with the task of notifying emergency responders of
the location of the waiting occupant.
- Employees are responsible for identifying themselves to their supervisor
if they will need assistance during a building evacuation and the supervisor
is responsible for establishing a workable evacuation plan for those employees.
2.2 Building Fires
2.3 Medical Emergencies
Initiate a building evacuation using the nearest alarm pull station.
Dial 911 to notify Public Safety and request fire department assistance.
If the fire is small and you have been trained in the use of portable fire
extinguishers, you may attempt to extinguish the fire.
Use the nearest safe exit route to exit the building. Close all doors on
the way out to prevent the spread of smoke and fire.
After exiting, immediately proceed to a safe location at least 100 feet
from the building.
Do not re-enter the building until the all-clear is given by Public Safety
or the fire department.
2.4 Chemical Spills
Evaluate the immediate area for potential safety hazards (fire, toxic
or explosive gas vapors, etc.) or situations that may require moving
the injured to a safer location. Otherwise move the injured no more than
Dial 911 to notify Public Safety and request first aid assistance or an
Provide emergency first aid as needed if you have been trained to do so.
If the injury involves exposure to a hazardous chemical, provide the Material
Safety Data Sheet to the medical emergency responders. If the MSDS cannot
be located in time, call the emergency room to offer the information as
soon as possible.
Each employee responsible for an activity involving the use of a hazardous
substance must prepare a written procedure to be followed in the event
of a spill and communicate the procedure to any students, contractors,
visiting scholars and scientists, and employees involved in the activity.
The written procedure and associated training must include information
on when to request outside assistance.
The following procedures are for chemical spills that can not be handled
safely by persons working in the area.
2.4.1 Chemical Spills Indoors
If the spill represents a hazard that is immediately dangerous to life
or health (IDLH), evacuate the room and, if necessary or in doubt, evacuate
Dial 911 to notify Public Safety and request assistance. Describe the situation
and whether there is a potential for fire or if there are injuries. Public
Safety will contact the Occupational Safety and Health Services emergency
spill response coordinator for assistance. Be prepared to provide a description
of the substance spilled and a Material Safety Data Sheet, if possible.
The area of the spill must be secured to prevent students or employees
from entering the danger zone.
From a safe location, provide directions to the location and information
about the spill to Public Safety or other emergency response personnel
2.4.2 Chemical Spills Outdoors
Dial 911 to notify Public Safety. If the hazard is primarily to the environment and the
spill is too large to be cleaned up by on-site personnel, request assistance
from Occupational Safety and Health Services. If there is a danger to people
in the vicinity from fire or toxic vapors, request assistance from Public
Safety and the Houghton City Fire Department.
Follow your Department emergency spill response procedures to contain the
spill. Do not attempt a cleanup once you have determined that outside assistance
is needed, or if the spill has entered the soil, groundwater, or surface
Remain a safe distance away from the spill and warn passersby to stay
clear until help arrives. Be prepared to provide information about the
substance spilled, including the Material Safety Data Sheet, to emergency
2.5 Building Fire Safety
Building occupants shall not obstruct or tamper with any safety features
such as exit signs, sprinkler systems, heat and smoke detectors, alarm
pulls, horns, and strobes, etc.
Fire doors may not be propped open except with an approved magnetic interlock
Sprinkler heads and pipes may not be used to support decorations or other
items and stored materials must be at least eighteen inches below a sprinkler
Flammable and combustible storage shall be in conformance with the applicable
sections of this document and the National Fire Protection Association
and MIOSHA standards.
Stairwells shall be kept free of obstructions and shall not be used for
storage, recycle containers, vending machines, etc.
Hallways may not be used for storage of combustible materials, items that
could inadvertently be moved into the traffic path during an emergency,
or items that reduce the width of the hallway.
Vending machines may not be located where they will reduce the width of
a hallway or other building exit path during refilling operations and may
not be located in stairways.
Items may not be placed in hallways without approval from Facilities Management
and Occupational Safety and Health Services. Cabinets with doors or drawers
will not be approved if the open drawer or door reduces the hallway width
below the minimum required.
A minimum 36-inch clear exit aisle must be maintained from each workstation.
Special events must be planned so that displays and refreshment tables
do not obstruct exits or exit access routes.
Classrooms without fixed seating shall be set up to allow access to the
exit door(s) from each row of seats and seating may not exceed 49 in rooms
with a single exit.
Additional occupants may not be accommodated in aisles, exit paths, or
other portions of classrooms and other assembly areas provided with fixed
Open flames are permitted only in laboratories and other designated hot
work areas unless a hot work permit is obtained (see section 5.3 in this
Lighted candles are not permitted except in supervised dining areas, provided
they are securely supported on a noncombustible base and the flame is protected.
2.5.1 Holiday Decorations In Buildings Other Than Residence Halls and Apartments
Decorated artificial trees may
be set up indoors and displayed starting the Monday after Thanksgiving
through the end of the calendar year.
The use of cut natural trees is not permitted without approval from Occupational
Safety and Health Services.
Electric lights and lighted decorations must bear the Underwriters Laboratories
seal and must be turned off when the room or space is not occupied.
Decorations must be located so that they do not obstruct any exits, hallways,
stairs, or firefighting equipment from view or use. No lights or lighted
decorations may be placed on or near an exit sign.
Electric lights may not be placed on an all-metallic tree or other metallic structure.
Combustible decorations may not be placed in stairwells and should be kept to a minimum
Lighted candles are not permitted except in supervised dining areas, provided they
are securely supported on a noncombustible base and the flame is protected.