Fire Safety

Fires can destroy years of research, put your laboratory out of service for extended periods of time, cause a significant financial impact on the University, and result in serious injuries or death.

To reduce the risk of fire, follow these simple work practices:

  • Store flammable liquids in a flammable storage cabinet.
  • Keep flammable liquids and gases away from sources of ignition such as electrical outlets and open flames.
  • Take out of service equipment with the damaged electrical wiring.
  • Do not hang items from sprinkler heads.
  • Do not store flammable liquids in non-explosion-proof refrigerators.
  • Make sure emergency exits are not blocked.
  • Evacuate the building when the fire alarm sounds.

Common findings relevant to fire safety: 

Sprinkler heads are obstructed: 

Remove all obstructions from around sprinkler heads, including combustible material from within 18 inches of sprinkler heads or other large pieces of equipment.

Items stored less than 18 inches from ceiling or sprinkler head: 

Remove all combustible material from within 18 inches of the ceiling. Examples include cardboard boxes, paper files, and flammable liquids.

Fire extinguisher is inaccessible: 

Remove equipment and material that block access to the fire extinguisher. In addition, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration requires that people who are expected to use a fire extinguisher at work are trained on how to use it. Please contact the University Fire Marshal at (410) 706-3494 if you would like to have your staff trained on how to use a fire extinguisher.

Fire extinguishers have not been tested annually: 

A fire extinguisher must be tested annually or discarded. Several vendors offer testing and recharge services. To discard of a fire extinguisher, contact Facilities Management at (410) 706-7570.