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Consequences of Fire Damage in Colleges
By the RestorationSOS Educational Staff
College fires aren't often reported in the news, but they do happen, and more often than you might think. With thousands of students living in close quarters to one another, it is not at all uncommon for campus fires to occur. There are various culprits, of course, such as fires started by science lab experiments or cafeteria workers. However, fires related to alcohol consumption by students remains the single most common cause for college fires.
The consequences of college fires are numerous and largely depend on where the fire was centered. If the fire occurs in a dormitory, the possibility for injury is great especially if alcohol was involved. Inebriation slows down judgment and hampers reaction time, meaning that if there is a fire, some students may not be able to evacuate effectively resulting in serious burns or smoke inhalation. Even if everyone is able to evacuate safely, the damage done to the dorm by the fire will usually mean that students will be at least temporarily displaced until the dorm has been repaired and restored.
Other Fire-Prone Areas
Science lab or cafeteria fires are often caught faster due to the fact of so many people being present when they occur, as well as sprinkler systems in most college and university facilities that are designed to knock down such blazes. However, there remains the problem of fire and smoke damage to the classroom or lab, which means that classes may have to be canceled or relocated until the damage can be addressed, which may take a period of weeks. In severe cases, curriculums may be disrupted for an extended period, making it difficult for professors to get in the entire lesson plan that they had plotted out for the semester.
Cafeteria fires occur most often in the kitchen area, which has little effect on students. Again, these are generally minor, since most kitchens are equipped with sprinklers and kitchen workers are usually trained on proper use of fire extinguishing equipment. As a result, most cafeteria and kitchen fires are knocked down pretty quickly.
Fires occurring in administrative buildings have more effect since they present the very real threat of damaging or destroying vital documents, computer files, and student records. Unless the school has offsite backup or stored copies of such material, the recovery process from such a fire may be a long one. Add to that the number of employees who will be displaced as a result of the fire and it becomes a serious situation.