Owning or managing an apartment complex comes with a variety of different stressors. From collecting rent, handling tenant complaints, cleaning vacant apartments, and other issues, there are major things to consider as well. What happens if a fire breaks out in the building? Are tenants prepared? Do you have a safety plan in place?
Here are a few tips to create a fire escape plan for your apartment building.
- Let’s start with the basics. Before you even consider creating an apartment fire escape plan, let’s make sure that there are smoke detectors installed in each unit and in all common areas of the building. This includes laundry rooms and hallways too.
- Fire extinguishers should be installed on each floor. State regulations vary from state to state, so be certain that you are within your state laws. These must be checked each year as well.
- Exits must be lit well and easily noticed by tenants and visitors. Exit lights should be visible even through potential smoke of a fire. Tenants should never worry about seeing the exit or getting lost during an evacuation.
Planning the Evacuation
- Begin by drawing out a map of your building. This includes each unit and common area. Each map should have the location of the map clearly marked, along with paths to exits in case of a fire. Hand a copy to each unit and have them posted in each common area as well.
- Tenants on higher floors should have access to emergency ladders that allow them to escape from their windows. These ladders install quickly to the frames and drop to the ground, allowing everyone to climb down to safety.
- Two exits out of each unit is a must. This is a requirement by law. The exits can be by windows or doors, but each apartment must have two means of escape in case of a fire.
- Always practice your escape plan. Twice a year is recommended. It’s important that tenants are alerted that the drill is happening. Also plan to be available to answer any questions they may have once the drill is complete.
Call McMahon Services to Assist with Any Fire Damage
With the best planning, fires can still break out. The important thing is that tenants are safe and sound. The building can be replaced and repaired. At McMahon Services, we offer fire restoration services for the Chicago area. Our emergency services are always on standby, and we will begin the clean up as quickly as possible – getting your building back to normal and tenants back home with as little disruption as we can.