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Fire Safety Page

The mission of the Ames Laboratory Fire Safety Program is to provide a proactive fire prevention program designed to protect the lives  students, faculty, staff, and visitors and property. This mission is addressed through a comprehensive effort of fire safety, code enforcement, investigation, and audits. ESH&A serves as a resource fire safety issues as well as providing inspection and testing of fire extinguishers.

Prevention of fires in the workplace is the responsibility of all workers, students and visitors. All employees must be familiar with and understand:

  • Section 8 of the ESH&A Program Manual
  • Section 5.10 Welding, Cutting, and Brazing Program of the ESH&A Program Manual
  • Torch Safety at Ames Laboratory, Guide 10201.001
  • ISU Fire Safety Guidelines.
  • Fire hazards of the materials and processes to which they are exposed
  • Potential ignition sources and their control procedures

Departmental supervisors should review with employees the information covered in the Fire Safety Guidelines and cover any departmental procedures that may vary.

Fire Prevention Responsibilities for Individuals and Departments

  • Prohibit the use of space heaters.
  • Prohibit the use of candles or open flames in areas other than authorized shops and laboratories.
  • Keep building corridors obstruction-free. Bulletin boards, display cabinets of non-combustible construction and approved benches are acceptable.
  • Prohibit the placement of electrical cords running across doors or aisles, or behind or under furniture where they can become pinched.
  • Limit the use of extension cords to temporary use (no more than three days).
  • Use only power strips approved by Underwriters Laboratories (UL) and limit use to low wattage equipment (i.e., computers, printers, task lights).
  • Keep fire and corridor doors closed, unless equipped with magnetic hold-open devices. Wedges are not allowed.
  • Ensure that exit lights and emergency lights are functioning properly. Email "" to request maintenance.
  • Store flammable and combustible liquids in quantities greater than ten gallons in approved flammable liquid storage cabinets.
  • Use safety cans for the storage of flammable liquids in quantities over one gallon.
  • Strictly limit the use of refrigerators or freezers to those specifically designed by the manufacturer to store flammable liquids.
  • Make others aware of potential fire hazards and report violations of any guidelines to supervisors.

Fire Safety Documents:

Fire Safety Committee Charter

Fire Protection Baseline 2009

Examples - Fire Safety System Data

Fire Extingusher Use

Torch Safety Guide

ESH&A Program Manual

ISU Fire Safety Guidelines