Residents educated on fire safety

By Josh Bennett

Fire alarms wailed throughout the Chapel Glen Residence Halls, forcing startled students outside to an awaiting tutorial.

Every year, Housing and Residential Education hosts a fire-safety meeting outside of Chapel Glen, which begins with the fire alarms being pulled without warning.

Students are most prone to fire hazards while at home, said Mike Halligan, associate director of Environmental Health and Safety at the U, who spoke at the meeting, warning students of fire hazards on campus, especially in the Residence Halls.

More than 80 percent of fire fatalities occur in residential areas, half of which are alcohol-related, according to a fire-safety exam Halligan gave to students at the meeting.

Erik Hasenoehrl, a sophomore in chemistry, took the safety test and said he found it useful.

“Even when you get a question wrong, it gives you detailed information on what should actually be done in dangerous situations,” Hasenoehrl said.

In addition to educating students on fire safety, Halligan said the test also serves as an indicator of how students need to be better educated in case of a real fire.

“The University of Utah has one of the lowest fire-loss ratings in the country,” Halligan said. The rating is a direct result of how serious HRE and U students take fire safety, he said.

Hasenoehrl said though he liked the meeting, he didn’t like the method used to draw students to the scene.

“(Pulling a fire alarm) doesn’t teach important fire practices if residents don’t know what to do in the first place,” he said.

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