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#183580 - 09/29/09 08:33 PM The Fire Alarm Sounds. Do you...
MartinFocazio Offline

Pooh-Bah

Registered: 01/21/03
Posts: 2148
Loc: Bucks County PA
OK, something here reminded me of an incident with my family a couple of years ago on Long Island.

We were in the Ikea store in Hicksville, New York (yes, it's a real place) and the fire alarm sounded. I grabbed my son's hand, my wife grabbed my daughter's hand (#3 was on the way) and we looked for the nearest fire exit.

We went to the door, and I paused for a second to feel it, and noticed that NOBODY EVEN STOPPED SHOPPING. I mean like not even a pause!

Well, we opened the door, waited a moment, and then they announced that it was a false alarm - but I mean, gee, don't you even think that maybe a move TOWARD the fire exit is in order until you know?


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#183583 - 09/29/09 08:39 PM Re: The Fire Alarm Sounds. Do you... [Re: MartinFocazio]
Nicodemus Offline
Paranoid?
Veteran

Registered: 10/30/05
Posts: 1341
Loc: Virginia, US
I've seen the same thing happen on a few occasions. I think it's a case similar to "The Boy Who Cried Wolf". Not that they should be ignored, but people are inundated by alarms these days, from anti theft devices in stores to car alarms and so on.

I'm not saying that this is a valid excuse for not reacting to an alarm every time, just that people become complacent.
_________________________
"Learn survival skills when your life doesn't depend on it."

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#183584 - 09/29/09 08:40 PM Re: The Fire Alarm Sounds. Do you... [Re: MartinFocazio]
Desperado Offline
Veteran

Registered: 11/01/08
Posts: 1530
Loc: DFW, Texas
Since meeting the firefighter in full turn-outs and scba I mentioned in the previous thread, and the one gloriously aflame hotel....

YEP

And I don't care how many times the darn thing has gone off in the preceding days/weeks/months.

I recently worked with a medically retired FF that still keeps his bail-out rig in his hotel room. I bet he makes it to the ground before the folks on the first floor make it out the door.
_________________________
I do the things that I must, and really regret, are unfortunately necessary.

RIP OBG

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#183585 - 09/29/09 08:47 PM Re: The Fire Alarm Sounds. Do you... [Re: MartinFocazio]
Desperado Offline
Veteran

Registered: 11/01/08
Posts: 1530
Loc: DFW, Texas
My favorite fire escape situation was noticed recently at a local big box store.

The store has Handicapped Evacuation Assistance Meeting points. This was the first I had EVER seen something like that. I am really impressed by the thought that went into that.

Until it dawned on me the sign was almost at ceiling level next to the "EXIT" sign, and its lights weren't working. Last I checked, smoke and toxic gasses RISE TO THE CEILING. Gonna be kinda hard to find that sign.

One of the few things I agree with that California does is require exit route signs at floor level. You know, down where you will actually be when the joint is on fire?
_________________________
I do the things that I must, and really regret, are unfortunately necessary.

RIP OBG

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#183589 - 09/29/09 09:13 PM Re: The Fire Alarm Sounds. Do you... [Re: MartinFocazio]
LED Offline
Veteran

Registered: 09/01/05
Posts: 1474
Maybe its a byproduct of human adaptation. In most urban areas, if you're used to hearing sirens, horns, alarms, and loud construction noises all day everyday, the alarm would just be normal background noise that you've been conditioned to ignore. Or maybe there were some really good sales?

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#183591 - 09/29/09 09:19 PM Re: The Fire Alarm Sounds. Do you... [Re: LED]
Russ Online   content
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 4963
Loc: SOCAL
Ikea? Sounds like a good excuse to leave.

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#183594 - 09/29/09 09:50 PM Re: The Fire Alarm Sounds. Do you... [Re: Russ]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
How I react to a fire alarm depends on where I am.

When I was working in a hospital, heavily compartmentalized by firewalls, sprinklers and an exit only twenty seconds away, I generally waited for the second shoe to drop or some indication of the size and location of the problem to be revealed.

When I was working at a chemical plant, surrounded by a buttload of flammable, explosive and corrosive chemicals, you were risking getting run over if you got between me and the exit. We would stay aware of the wind direction and make sure we could leave quickly and stay upwind.

It always pays to know where the exits are and contemplate them in terms of what you do if your first, or second, choice is blocked. Keeping this in mind means you don't have to spend time thinking about it.

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#183595 - 09/29/09 09:52 PM Re: The Fire Alarm Sounds. Do you... [Re: Russ]
haertig Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/13/05
Posts: 2027
Loc: Colorado
At my office, the fire alarm is so loud, high pitched and obnoxious that you HAVE to leave immediately. Staying would result in your brain melting and dripping out your ears. I'm not kidding - when those alarms go off it's immediate exodus by everybody. I'm surprised folks don't throw their desks at the windows to break them, and then jump from the third floor to escape the noise. It's terrible! Set a few of our alarms off in a retail establishment and you'd have sheer panic as people stampeded for the exits.

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#183610 - 09/29/09 10:57 PM Re: The Fire Alarm Sounds. Do you... [Re: haertig]
Desperado Offline
Veteran

Registered: 11/01/08
Posts: 1530
Loc: DFW, Texas
Originally Posted By: haertig
you'd have sheer panic as people stampeded for the exits.


Sheer Panic...

Another reason I want to be out early. When all the stragglers do realize they are about to receive a first hand lesson on BBQ'ing I do not want to be any closer to the structure than 300 feet.

Trampled then cooked is not high on my list of final exits.
_________________________
I do the things that I must, and really regret, are unfortunately necessary.

RIP OBG

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#183613 - 09/29/09 11:01 PM Re: The Fire Alarm Sounds. Do you... [Re: Desperado]
EchoingLaugh Offline
Member

Registered: 09/20/09
Posts: 156
Loc: MO, On the Mississippi
when i worked at a foundry, fire alarms were the signal for an extended break. grab your gear (water/soda/cigs/phone) and meet at the rally point outside. i (like everybody else) did not run. but there was no poking either. the fire alarm sounded at least once every three months though. they were like second nature, they were so frequent. but at my college it is pandemonium. the alarm in the science building went off and people were trying to break windows, a girl got pretty banged up on the stairs. (labs ground level, classrooms in basement) i had to deal with a few idiots myself. amazing how a rabbit punch to a kidney will calm someone down. whistle
_________________________
Jim
Do you know where your towel is?
Don't Panic!
I have an extra.

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