Fire Policy

Fire Safety

Principia's fire safety program is designed to reduce the dangers to people and property associated with fire. The following rules relating to fire safety on the Principia College campus meet the minimum requirements set forth by the Illinois State Fire Marshal's Office. Campus Security is responsible for ensuring compliance with these rules and works closely with the Fire Marshal's office and other local authorities in their effort to ensure a safe working and living environment. It is everyone's responsibility to support these rules and report any deficiencies immediately. Please direct any questions to Campus Security at extension 5470.

Fire Alarms

At the sound of a fire alarm, it is mandatory to evacuate the building immediate!y via the safest fire exit.

If in a dorm, gather outside in your designated area. Do not reenter the building until advised to by a Campus Security representative, and the alarm is shut off.

Hallways, Doorways, and Stairways

All hallways and stairways must remain lit 24 hours a day. Notify your house manager or the Facilities department if lights are not working. All hallway and stairway doors (including student room doors) are equipped with automatic door closers. To reduce the risk of fire and smoke spreading in a building, these doors may not be blocked open or their automatic closing and latching feature be compromised in any way.

All exit routes shall be free from any kind of obstruction or impediment at any time.

Student Rooms

No furniture, decoration or other objects shall block view into and easy and normal entry or exit of any dorm room or be in front of any doorway. It should take no more than 3 seconds to determine if someone is in the room.


All beds must have the side of the bed nearest the door, clear of obstructions, and be at least 2 inches away from wall outlets that are occupied by a power cord of any type, including lamp cords, computer, hair dryer, stereo, etc. Only beds supplied by the college may be used in student residences.

Academic and Administrative Buildings

For fire safety reasons, sleeping in academic or administrative buildings is discouraged.


The following electrical appliances may be used in dorm rooms as long as they are 1100 watts or less: televisions, stereos, lamps, microwaves, hot pots, coffee makers, and hot air popcorn poppers.

Only heavy duty extension cords (available at the College Bookstore) may be used in conjunction with

these appliances. Curling irons and clothing irons must always be unplugged when not in use.

All other cooking should take place in the dorm kitchens. The following electrical appliances may not beused in dorm rooms: toasters, hot plates, warming trays, and popcorn poppers that use oil.

Flammable liquids (gasoline, kerosene, etc.), space heaters, halogen torchiere lamps are also not permitted in the dormitories.

Candles, Flames, and Incense

Possession and use of incense, candles, or other objects which utilized a flame (open or contained) is prohibited in student housing (this includes lighters and matches).

Tapestries and Posters

Tapestries are very flammable and not recommended, but if you choose to use one it must:
- be certified as "fire resistant treated."
- include the length of time that such treatment is effective.
- be at least 18 inches from the floor, lamps, electrical outlets, heaters, or other electrical appliances .
- not occupy more than 50% of a single wall.
- not cover windows, doors, bulletin boards and other non-wall surfaces.

Unframed posters must not cover more than 50% of a single wall and must not be attached to ceilings.

Tapestries, Indian blankets, posters, sheets, etc., are not to be used as ceilings or attached to the ceilings in dorm rooms or be placed over or obscure exits in any way, and they are not to be used as room dividers. This aids in preventing fire from spreading across a room or falling on occupants.

Fire Protection and Suppression Equipment

Tampering with fire protection equipment including "pull and runs," automatic door closing devices and fire suppression equipment (sprinkler systems, portable extinguishers, any firehouse equipment, including emergency vehicles) is prohibited and will result in an automatic fine. If the person(s) responsible cannot be determined, the house may be charged.


The sale, use, or possession of fireworks, including firecrackers and rockets, etc. is illegal in Illinois. A fine wil be charged to any individual possessing or using fireworks. If no individual is found responsible, the fine may be charged to the house. Further legal action is possible.