FDNY Fire Safety Education members were at 500 W. 43rd St. in Manhattan last week, to help educate the public about fire safety in high-rise buildings.
“Fire is dangerous, but the smoke it produces is, too,” Chief of Operations James Esposito said. “It is critical this message resonates.”
A 3-alarm fire at the Midtown apartment building on Jan. 5 killed one man who was overcome with smoke while trying to flee through the stairwell. The cause of the fire was a faulty powerstrip.
“If they would have just stayed put, they would have been okay,” said Esposito. “The safest course of action is to stay put in these type of fireproof multiple dwellings. The fire generally will not extend.”
The FDNY urges all residents of high-rise buildings to do the following in case of fire:
If the fire is in your apartment:
- Leave immediately and close the door behind you.
- Call 911 once you are out of the apartment.
If the fire is not in your apartment:
- Stay in your apartment. Buildings above seven floors are fireproof.
- Call the FDNY, let them know you are there. The FDNY will come to your apartment.
You also can call building management, which will be updated by the Fire Department.
Keep your door closed. If smoke is coming into your apartment, put a wet towel below your door.
“Your natural instinct is to flee, but that is dangerous,” Chief Esposito said. “People need to help themselves, and use this information to protect their families.”
For more fire safety tips and downloads residents and property managers can use, read FDNY fire safety materials.