Call 911 to Report a Fire

Fire Hazards

You should be continually on the alert for fire safety hazards. Report hazards to Campus Code Compliance & Fire Safety (CCC&FS) at 217-265-5268.

Frequent fire safety hazards include:

  • Permitting aisles, corridors, and routes of egress to become obstructed.
  • Using extension cords, ungrounded plugs, and unfused multiple outlet adapters for various small appliances. These are not permitted and will only overload the electrical circuit.
  • Illegal storage in corridors, fan rooms, equipment rooms, under stairways, etc. These areas must be kept clear at all times.
  • Improper handling and storage of chemicals and flammable liquids. These must be limited to acceptable quantities and stored only in approved cabinets.
  • Wedging open of fire resistive doors. These doors are designed to slow the spread of fire. Keep them closed at all times.
  • Improper smoking habits. Smoke only in permitted areas, and discard ashes in approved ashtrays only. The university will become a smoke-free campus in November 2013.

Be Prepared

Know the exit routes from your office, floor, and building. Study these in advance. It is easy to get disoriented during an actual emergency.

Know the location of fire extinguishers and how to use them. Read the directions before an emergency. Report missing extinguishers immediately.

Post emergency numbers on your telephone. If these numbers are not posted on your phone, call the building RA/RD, office manager, or telecommunications.

Report any unsafe conditions to CCC&FS at 217-265-5268.

If a Fire Occurs

Notify anyone in the immediate area.

  • Activate the nearest fire alarm box.
  • Call 911.
  • Confine the fire by closing doors and windows.
  • Attempt to extinguish the fire only if it is safe to do so.
  • If there is smoke or heat, stay low.
  • Do not use elevators.

Before opening any door, feel it near the top. If it is hot, do not open. Instead:

  • Call 911 and tell them your exact location and situation.
  • Place a blanket or similar article along the bottom of your door to keep out smoke. If possible, wet the material first.
  • Retreat. Close as many doors between you and the fire as possible.
  • Hang a light colored material out the window to attract attention from below. Do not jump.

If the door is not hot:

  • Open the door cautiously--stand behind the door and be prepared to close quickly if there is excessive smoke.
  • Conduct a final search before leaving, if safe to do so.
  • If your mobility is limited by wheelchair, crutches, etc., and you have a telephone, stay where you are and call 911 for help. If you do not have a telephone, leave the area and position yourself in the stairwell landing (if applicable), if it is clear, and wait for responding agencies.
  • Assemble outside. Do not re-enter the building until notified.

Fire Dos and Don'ts

  • Do Report the fire--don't assume someone else will call. Call the Fire Department at 911.
  • Do Activate the nearest alarm box. Know their locations.
  • Do Close doors--they will slow the spread of fire.
  • Do Use stairs to vacate the building. Assemble outside.
  • Do Evacuate your floor, when there is smoke visible or you are instructed to leave by the floor fire marshals, the RA/RDs or Fire Department personnel.
  • Don't Use elevators--elevators can be very dangerous in a fire, even when they appear safe. Always use the stairs instead of an elevator.
  • Don't Arbitrarily break windows--falling glass is a serious threat to both pedestrians and fire fighting personnel.
  • Don't Exit until you have felt the top of the exit door and the door knob. If either are hot, or if excessive smoke prevents your exit, keep the door closed. Fire on the other side will blast through the slightest opening with tremendous force.
  • Don't Go back for your things if you are ordered to leave.
  • Don't Congregate in the stairways--keep to the right and keep going until it is safe to exit. Always move down and out.
  • Don't Panic--remain calm. Help is on the way.