10 Safety Tips for High-rise Apartment & Condo Buildings

It’s National Fire Prevention Week! Given our recent emergency response to a 60-unit condo building in Elmwood Park, we thought it would be fitting to offer the ten below safety tips for renters and owners of high-rise apartment and condominium buildings.

  1. Before renting an apartment or purchasing a condo, it is important to ensure there is a fire suppression/sprinkler system in place.
  2. Once you finalize the lease or purchase, we recommend meeting with your landlord or building manager to learn about the building’s fire safety features, including but not limited to its fire alarms, sprinklers, and evacuation plans.
  3. You should take some time to walk around the building to familiarize yourself with all available exist stairs from your floor.
  4. It is pivotal you ensure all exit and stairwell doors always remain unlocked and clear.
  5. If a fire occurs, exit the building via the stairs, pulling the fire alarm as you do so.
  6. Carefully listen to all instructions provided by the property and/or building manager and fire department.
  7. Do not use the elevator unless directed by the fire department.
  8. Feel all doors before opening them if you are attempting to exit the building during a fire. Do not enter doors that are hot.
  9. Be sure to close all doors behind you as you leave.
  10. If you are unable to exit your unit, you should take the following measures:
    1. Stuff wet towels or sheets around your door and vents to prevent smoke from entering your unit
    2. Call the fire department to inform them as to where you are
    3. Slightly open a window and wave a bright cloth to signal your location


Source: National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)