Policies & Procedures

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Portable Electric Appliances

Electrical appliances that can generate heat or malfunction should never be left unattended. They should be unplugged after use and not stored until they are cool enough to touch. Personal portable electric heaters should not be used except under extraordinary circumstances and after conditional written approval by the Department of Housing and the Campus Fire Marshal. UL listed baseboard heaters distributed by the Department of Housing are acceptable provided the circuits are not overloaded and other safety precautions are observed.

Smoking

All residence halls are designated as completely smoke free. Smoking is not permitted in residential or common areas of the residence halls. Smoking is permitted outside the residence halls 25 feet away from entrances, windows, vents or any other area where the smoke may impact other community members. Careless disposal of matches and cigarette butts is a common cause of fire. Use caution when disposing of such items. 

Open flames

Many fires occurring in residence hall are a result of burning candles.  Camp stoves, open coil heating, cooking elements, kerosene lamps, etc., can be extremely hazardous. These open flame devices are not permitted in student rooms.  Similarly, burning incense is not allowed. Cooking on barbecue grills and hibachis is not allowed in or around the halls.  Activities such as making candles or waxing skis are not permitted in your room or areas in the halls other than those designated by the Department of Housing and approved by the Campus Fire Marshal.

Decorations

Flammable items such as tapestries, fishnets, parachutes, sheets and paper may not be hung from walls or ceilings.  All decorations (holiday, etc.) must be treated with flame retardant.  Christmas trees must be artificial, bearing UL labels.  Real trees, natural wreaths, etc. present an extreme fire hazard once they dry and, thus, are prohibited.  Decorations that extend down hallway walls are not allowed.  Decorations must clear all sprinkler heads by at least 18 inches.

Electrical Overloads

To reduce the risk of fire resulting from overloaded circuits, we strongly recommend the use of a multi-plug circuit breaker outlet if more outlets are needed.  Extension cords are a major cause of residential fires – avoid using them.  If your circuit breaker trips, it is possible someone on the circuit is overloading it or using a defective appliance.  If this happens, report it to the hall office.  Also, too many of certain types of appliances such as coffee makers, popcorn poppers, hair dryers, and curling irons may overload the circuits.

Portable Electric Heaters

Personal portable electric heaters should not be used except under extraordinary circumstances and after conditional written approval by the Department of Housing and the Campus Fire Marshal.  UL listed baseboard heaters distributed by the Department of Housing are acceptable provided the circuits are not overloaded and other safety precautions are observed.

Flammable Liquids (and other hazardous chemicals)

Gasoline, ether, paint, glue, etc. are not permitted in student rooms or storage areas.  Motorized vehicles are not allowed in the buildings under any circumstances.

Halogen Lamps

Due to the high temperatures emitted from halogen lamps, they are prohibited in residence halls.  It has been reported that many fires are caused by materials coming in contact with the halogen bulb or other parts of the lamp.

Foam rubber

Foam rubber emits deadly toxic gases when it burns and should not be used in student rooms.  Most “bean-bag” chairs are stuffed with foam rubber.  Foam rubber-filled items are prohibited in student rooms.