Apartment Fire Safety

Many students opt to rent apartments in the community rather than live in on-campus housing. Although RIT is not responsible for the condition of these residences, our concern for our students' safety does not change. With this in mind, we want to be sure that students who do choose to live off-campus are aware of safety issues (fire safety, personal safety, and general hygiene) that must be considered when renting an apartment. Smoke detectors/fire alarm systems, fire escapes and escape plans, and fire extinguishers are all items that should be considered when renting an apartment.

Electrical Hazards

Never overload electrical outlets by plugging too many electronics into it. Using surge protectors to increase the number of outlets where needed is OK and they provide protection of sensitive equipment as well. However, avoid chaining multiple extension cords and surge protectors together. Keep wires out in the open and be sure not to put pressure or tension on the cords (such as stretching a cord or placing it under a desk). Electronics which generate large amounts of heat (such as space heaters and soldering irons) should be monitored at all times.


The most important thing to remember is that you should never leave while you are cooking. Unattended stoves or ovens are often causes of fires. If a fire occurs while you are cooking, smother the fire instead of using water. Baking soda can be used to put out a grease fire. Secure all loose clothing and hair so that it does not catch fire and keep a fire extinguisher close.


Furniture should be placed in a manner that allows easy flow of traffic throughout your living space. Never place furniture so that it protrudes or blocks walkways, doorways, stairs, or windows, even if it is for a short time. Lofted or bunked beds can be a hazard. Be sure that there is at least 36 inches above the top mattress.