Fire safety

Make sure you know about fire safety dos and don’ts, equipment in your residence and what to do if there’s a fire.

Fire doors, safety equipment and banned items

The doors to your room and kitchen are fire doors and must be kept closed. They are fitted with metal door-closing mechanisms at the top to make sure that they close and prevent the spread of fire and smoke. Propping open a fire door is a disciplinary offence.

There are heat and/or smoke detectors in your accommodation. Don’t cover the detectors in any way as this will stop them working. Don't unscrew them either, as this activates the fire alarm and you will be fined. Heat detectors are activated by the rate of heat rise within a room and are not affected by smoke or steam from kitchens or by cigarette smoke. Smoke detectors are sensitive to quite small amounts of smoke, steam or dust.

There are extinguishers and fire blankets in your residence. In catered halls there are also water hoses. Familiarise yourself with the location of the fire safety equipment and fire exits. Remember your usual exit route may not be available in a fire.

The fire extinguishers have a tag fitted around the handle which shows that the extinguisher is in good working order and is ready to use. To use the extinguisher, tear off this tag and follow the instructions. If you notice any missing or damaged tags, report this to the residence office immediately. You must also tell the office if you use an extinguisher, so the contents can be replaced. If you don't do this, you will be charged for a new one.

The following modes of transport or vehicles are not permitted inside a university premise including halls of residence; e-scooters, e-bikes, e-hoverboards or e-skateboards. You must not keep any vehicle, or motor vehicle parts indoors at residence. Storage of these modes of transport should only be in the external bike shelters, use of which is at your own risk. Charging of E-bikes, E-scooters, E-hoverboards, E-skateboards or their batteries where detachable must not under any circumstance take place within a University building. Vehicle does not apply to wheelchairs for your own use.

Not allowed in University accommodation because of fire risk

  • portable electric or gas heaters or cooking equipment
  • items with a naked flame, eg candles or oil lamps
  • chip pans
  • electrical decorations

Never leave the kitchen when you're cooking! Make sure you close the kitchen door and remember to turn on the extractor fan and open the window as well.

Fire safety update

The University wants to reassure its students, staff and other campus users that their safety is an absolute priority. Following the tragic fire at Grenfell high rise flats in London, the University is conducting a range of precautionary assessments of its buildings. You can read our latest statement. We remain vigilant and we will continue to review our actions in line with the latest guidance.

If you discover a fire

If you know there is a fire then ring the fire brigade on 999 and University Security Services on (+44) 0113 343 2222 (emergency number).

If the fire alarm sounds

Always assume it's for real. Evacuate the building immediately* and go directly to the assembly point. Full instructions are on the back of your room door. Make sure you’re familiar with these, so you know what to do in an emergency. Don't use the lifts. Remember to tell a member of staff that the fire alarm is sounding.

Don’t store bikes or anything else in corridors, stairwells or foyers, as they can cause an obstruction in the event of an evacuation.

Don’t return to your room until a Fire Officer, University Security Officer, member of residence staff, Residence Life Warden or Residence Life Assistant gives you permission. There may be a delay between the silencing of the alarm and the instruction to return to your flat to allow safety checks to be carried out.

Unfortunately, sometimes the fire alarm is activated by someone deliberately breaking the glass of a call point without reason. This is a criminal offence. Anyone who activates the fire alarm without good reason will be fined.

Evacuation of buildings is extremely disruptive and we need to minimise this. You can expect to pay a fine if a fire alarm or smoke detector goes off because of irresponsible behaviour, such as leaving the kitchen door open whilst cooking, or leaving the cooker on or unattended.

Students in wheelchairs are provided with a Personal Emergency Egress Plan (PEEP) when they arrive at University.

*There are different fire alarm processes at Carlton Hill, please check the fire notices on site or the Unipol website for more information if you live here.