Safe Haven Information

What's A Safe Haven?

A Safe Haven is an area where persons with mobility impairments can go to wait for assistance from emergency response personnel such as police officers and fire fighters when a fire alarm goes off.

Why do we have Safe Havens?

New building codes incorporate "Areas of Rescue Assistance" for persons with mobility impairments as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act. Safe Havens are the University's method of providing similar protection for those individuals in buildings that were built before the new requirements were adopted.

Since elevators are not to be used during a fire, it only makes sense for persons with mobility impairments to go to specified areas so that emergency responders know where to look first. University Police and the Kenosha Fire Department have lists and maps of Safe Haven locations, and will concentrate on assisting persons in Safe Havens as one of their first orders of business when responding to a fire.

Where are Safe Havens Located?

Safe Havens are located on floors where persons with mobility impairments cannot exit the building through ground level doorways, or cannot move to another connected building. Thus, there are no Safe Havens on ground level floors, the concourse level, or the D2 (basement) level in the main complex. Click here for a list of Safe Haven areas and their exact locations. Emergency information signs posted in University buildings also show Safe Haven locations.

How are Safe Havens Marked?

The exterior door to a Safe Haven is marked with a white on blue rectangular sign showing a wheelchair symbol and a flame symbol separated by a wall.

The Safe Haven Area itself is marked with a white on blue circular sign with a wheelchair symbol surrounded by the words "Safe Haven Area Keep Clear." Some areas also are denoted by blue lines in addition to the circular signs.

What should I do if I can't get to a Safe Haven Area?

If you cannot make it to a Safe Haven due to fire, smoke or some other obstruction, make your way to a stairwell or an exterior room with windows as far from the fire or smoke as possible and close the door behind you. Do not lock the door! If possible, let someone who is leaving know where you are. If you're in a room with a working phone, call 2911 and let University Police know where you are.

If you are in an exterior room, go to the window and signal for help in any way that you can, i.e. wave a cloth. If the windows will not open, use an object to break the window. Note: Breaking windows is hazardous and should only be done if necessary. Try to keep low and use a damp cloth over your nose and mouth to help filter out smoke. A damp cloth against the bottom of the door may also help to keep smoke out.

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