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9/20/11 - Regulatory Compliance & Safety sponsors Fire Safety Day Wednesday

As part of a month-long observance on Magnolia State university and college campuses, Mississippi State is designating Wednesday, Sept. 21 as a day of fire-safety education activities.

The university's Office of Regulatory Compliance and Safety is joining with the Starkville Fire Department for a program of displays, exhibits, fire extinguisher use lessons, and free giveaways. Representatives from the State Fire Marshal's Office and Columbus Air Force Base also are participating.

The events take place 10 a.m.-2 p.m. in front of the Colvard Student Union. In the event of rain, all activities will be canceled.

"Everyone is responsible for preventing fires and knowing how to handle a fire emergency, and we believe that raising awareness and sharing information about how to do that go hand in hand," said ORCS director Kacey Strickland. "Fire safety day is the perfect time to learn more about what can be done to reduce fire risks and enhance safety on campus."

Regulatory Compliance works closely with the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station's risk management team and local firefighters to provide fire prevention and safety resources throughout the year, she added.

According to a State Fire Marshal's Office report, 14 campus-based buildings around the state have experienced fires since January 2005.

Nine were in residence halls or barracks, four in fraternity or sorority houses and one in a non-residential building. Also during this time were three on-campus fired-related deaths, as well as another death at an off-campus location involving a full-time student.

None of the deaths occurred at Mississippi State, Strickland said.

Since 2000, the most common factors cited by the fire marshal's office in campus-related fatal fires are missing or disabled smoke alarms; careless disposal of smoking materials; impaired judgment from alcohol consumption; and lack of automatic fire sprinklers in off-campus housing, where more than 80 percent of campus-related fires take place.

For additional information about the Sept. 21 fire safety activities, contact Strickland at 662- 325-3294 or kstrickland@research.msstate.edu.

Jim Laird | University Relations

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