National Fire Prevention Week -October 7-13, 2012

National Fire Prevention Week Midtown Atlanta Condo SafetyYou know, things just have a funny way of happening.

Just yesterday, I was on the 21st floor of Twelve Atlantic Station with my first-time home (condo) buyer doing the inspection on the condo she is buying. And while we were talking, the subject of water and fire came up.

Water because the home inspector was showing her where the main water shut off was if there was ever an emergency in her condo regarding water. If you don’t live in a high, or mid-rise condominium, the two biggest problem causes are water and fire.

So then this morning, I see that next week is National Fire Prevention Week, October 7-13 to be exact. And it got me thinking about all the high-rise buildings in Atlanta. Of course there are the office buildings, but let’s focus on the residential condominium buildings. And fire safety.

Most of today’s newer condominium towers have pretty advanced life safety systems. But the are not fool proof, and still require human intervention. If an alarm DOES sound, it’s still up the the building’s Concierge or security officer to determine if it’s a false alarm or a real emergency. As I have been told in many buildings, the alarms will sound on the floor above, and below where the actual alarm has been triggered. If not silenced within a certain amount of time (based on there NOT being an emergency) the alarm will then sound in the entire building. Now, I’m not a fireman, or fire marshal, so my understanding of this process should not be taken as the gospel truth!!!

National Fire Prevention WeekBut let’s just think about this for one minute. Heaven forbid, there IS a fire in your building? Do you have an escape plan? Have you really paid attention to where the stairs are located on your floor? You do know the elevators immediately return to the lobby, open and are not operational until a “fire key” is used to turn them back on?  Do you know where the stairwell exits out of your building? Maybe National Fire Prevention Week would be a good time to make your plan.

Are you aware that the doors to stairwells in high rises LOCK behind you when you enter the stairwell? (Or at least from a security standpoint most of them do?) There are suppose to be select floors whereby you can get OUT of the stairwell and back into a hallway if the exit via a stairwell is blocked.

Do you have a fire extinguisher in your condo?

Here’s a Saturday or Sunday morning exercise for you. Take the stairs from your condo to the street. Yeah, I don’t care if you are on the 28th or 36th floor. Take the stairs. Find out about locked doors. Find out about points of access back into the building if you needed to.

You know what? I’m having some knee problems, so a stairwell trip would be a real challenge for me, but I think I may just try it myself.

I’ll report back to you about what I found. And if you DO take this challenge, let me know by posting a comment here.

For MORE Information about fire safety and prevention, visit the National Fire Protection Association’s website.

Thom Abbott

I'm a real estate broker living and selling the Midtown Atlanta lifestyle. From high rise condominiums to historic homes, I enjoy everything Midtown Atlanta has to offer. I'll help you find the right home in Midtown Atlanta or any of the other exciting Intown Atlanta communities that border the Midtown Area!

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  1. Dot Edwards says

    Fire Safety is important Ishare the following safety tips with my community!

    • Fire can engulf an entire house in 60 seconds and an entire condo in even less time.
    • Locate the fire exits on your floor. Make sure you have a safe and quick method of escape!
    • Know where the fire extinguishers are on your floor & take a moment to read the instructions for use.
    • Never smoke in bed or when you are sleepy. Carelessly discarded cigarettes are a leading cause
    of fire deaths in the United States.

    Remember, fire safety is your personal responsibility…Fire Stops With You!

  2. Greg says

    I’m a property manager in Miami. I had a number of fire extinguishers installed by Premier Fire Alarms at the condo that I manage.They were very professional, cleaned up after the installation and also handle the servicing/ maintenance. I would recommend them to anyone. Check out their website or call (954) 797-7692.

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