Emergency » Area of Refuge – Rescue Assistance »

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An area of refuge is a specific location within a building that can protect people who are not able to safely escape on their own. For example, patients in a hospital, those with disabilities, or due to a blocked exit. These rooms have to meet special fire-safety codes and are usually constructed in such a way that provides fresh air and two-way communication with emergency personnel.

Imagine yourself in a building on the sixth floor, in a wheel chair or on crutches and the fire alarm system suddenly starts sounding. People start flowing out of rooms in a panic rushing for the stairwells. You desperately need to get out of the building; however, you realize the elevator is no longer in service as it was recalled for the fire department to use. Realizing you have no ability to get out of this building, this is a scenario in which you would want to seek out a designated emergency refuge area.

Once inside an area of refuge, there should be visible instructions to make a call to a remote location for rescue assistance. This button can make a difference in saving your life. Once the fire department is inside the building, they will see a light and hear a tone indicating that someone has made an emergency call and they will know which floor and/or stairwell the call was made from. They can quickly communicate with you in order to let you know they have arrived. This comforting call assures you they are on their way up to arrange for your safe passage. Area of refuge – rescue assistance systems save lives.

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