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Fire Safety

This leaflet contains important health and safety information. Please take time to read it and make yourself familiar with its contents.

1. Emergency Actions

• In the event of an emergency seek assistance and raise the alarm as soon as possible. The Internal Emergency Telephone Number is 2222. Action on discovering a fire:
• Sound the alarm by activating the nearest fire alarm manual call point (red ‘break glass’). The alarm may also activate automatically where heat and smoke detectors are installed.
• Contact the Security Control Room via the Emergency number, Ext: 2222 to inform them of the fire and to obtain assistance.
• Attempt to put out the fire using a portable fire extinguisher but only if you have been trained, it does not place you or others in any danger and you feel confident enough to do so. (See Fire Extinguishers over).
• Make your way out of the building and report to the Assembly Area.
Assembly Area is as follows:
Car park in front of the Centre for Cancer Research and Cell Biology.
In the event that First Aid is required:
• Call for help and contact your nearest First Aider. A list of available First Aiders and their contact numbers will be on display on the green First Aid posters posted throughout the building.

2. Evacuation Procedure
• The fire alarm is a loud siren with a tone that rises and falls (McClay Building & NICPPET) and continuous bells in the D’Arcy Pharmacy building.
• On hearing the fire alarm – immediately leave the building by the nearest available exit.
• Access controlled Doors – All access controlled doors (principally keypad access), which are on escape routes, are automatically set to the unlocked state when the fire alarm is activated to allow quick and safe exit.
• Magnetically locking doors can be released by pressing the green button located beside the door. In an emergency and in the event of failure of the release mechanism, activation of the green break glass will release the door.

Door release – break glass in event of doors remaining locked
• Your nearest available means of escape are: Main staircases in the McClay Research Centre and D’Arcy building which lead to the ground level exits.
• On leaving the building go directly to the Assembly Areas.
• Do not return to the building until you are told to do so.
Please make yourself familiar with the Fire Action and Evacuation Notices which are displayed in your workplace.

3. Fire Extinguishers
• The use of fire extinguishers will be covered by a formal training programme. You should not use a fire extinguisher unless you have been fully trained and you feel confident to do so.
• You should only tackle a fire if the appliances provided are suitable and it does not place you or others in any danger. Note newer fire extinguishers are all coloured RED.
Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Extinguishers are suitable for use on electrical fires. Do not use them on burning wood, paper or textile fires. Avoid holding the horn during discharge as you may receive a cold burn. Older CO2 extinguishers are coloured black.
Water Extinguishers are suitable for fires involving burning wood, paper or textiles. Do not use water on electrical fires due to the risk of electrocution.
Fire Blankets are available in kitchen areas.
Please make yourself familiar with the location of all fire extinguishers and fire alarm call points (break glasses) within your area.



4. Fire Precautions
Fire Doors and Escape Routes
• Fire Doors protect escape routes from smoke and fire and should not be compromised or kept propped open at any time.
• Escape routes must be kept clear from any obstruction or storage. Floors and walkways should not be used for general storage.
Fire Risks
• Never obstruct the ventilation of electrical equipment particularly by storing items on top of computer monitors.
• All items of electrical equipment should be switched off when not in use especially at night and weekends.
• Switch off all lights and close all doors and windows when leaving the office in the evening.
• Avoid storing combustible materials near sources of heat.

5. Smoking Policy
• Please note the University has a No Smoking Policy in all of its workplaces.

6. Working with Computers
• Your computer and work station should be organised to enable you to work safely and comfortably, please consult the guidance that is available on-line at www.qub.ac.uk/so. Some staff may have visual impairments or experience visual difficulties when viewing display screens. Eye sight testing is available for all staff using computer equipment via the University Safety Service.

7. Equipment
• Do not attempt to repair or modify any electrical equipment. Please report these problems (and other maintenance related matters) to your Building Liaison Officer (David McQuade) who can be contacted on Ex. 2018
• Be aware of the dangers associated with the operation and maintenance of equipment e.g. photocopiers, printers, guillotines etc which may cause electric shock or physical injury.
• Personal electrical appliances e.g. heaters, kettles may not be brought into the building unless approved by the Head of Department and they have been tested for electrical safety. Toasters etc. must only be used in a designated kitchen.

8. Out of hours working (after 6pm)
• Security may be notified of your out of hours working, where appropriate (ext: 5099) and can provide assistance in an emergency if required.
• Please ensure that all external doors are closed properly when entering and leaving the building outside normal working hours.

Note: Magnetically locking doors can be released by pressing the green button located beside the door. In an emergency and in the event of failure of the release mechanism, activation of the green break glass will release the door.

9. Lifting and Carrying
• Caution should be taken when lifting and carrying objects such as boxes of paper etc and you should ensure that anything lifted is within your own capability. Heavy objects e.g. water bottles must not be lifted unless you have been specifically trained and are capable of doing so.
• Anyone with any previous back problems or who may be pregnant should not lift or carry any heavy items under any circumstances. Take care not to create a lifting hazard for others by over filling waste bags and bins and heavy items should not be stored at high level storage.

10. Working at Height
• Do not take risks when working at any height. Work at height must be properly planned and appropriately supervised and carried out safely.

11. Accident and Reporting
• All accidents including near misses must be reported to the School Office and entered in the Accident Book.

12. Welfare Information
• Drinking water is available from marked mains water taps or water dispensers.
• Work and life in general can become very demanding at times. It is important that you seek to strike the correct balance. In the event that that balance is damaged you are encouraged to seek assistance. This may be from the University Counselling Service (for students), Occupational Health (for staff) or another source of your choosing.