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Presented by the Fire Prevention Division, Vermont Department of Labor and Industry
Hard wired smoke alarms with battery backup located outside sleeping rooms, and on each level of the apartment. These should be interconnected, installed by a licensed electrician, and positioned to wake up all sleeping occupants. New construction requires smoke alarms in sleeping rooms as well.
An egress window in each sleeping room, sized to allow firefighters to effect rescue. The minimum clear opening, when opened in normal operation, must be at least 5.7 sq. ft., with a sill height not exceeding 44 inches from the floor.
Ground fault circuit interrupters on bathroom circuits and kitchen outlets within 6 feet of sinks (Also required for wet areas and outdoor receptacles).
Reasonably safe wiring, including properly sized fuses(if fuse panels), adequately sized service and an adequate number of receptacles to avoid use of extension cords.
Reasonably safe and well maintained heating plants. Annual inspections are recommended to be performed by qualified oil or gas technicians.
Wood-burning installations with proper clearances from unit and vents to any wall surface, and placed on a non-combustible base.
Stair tread and risers within reasonable standards (generally 8 inch max. riser, 10 inch treads, with circular handrails on one side or the other.
Guardrails at decks or porches, 36 inches minimum height, with balusters having spacing not exceeding 4 inches.
Basic fire safety knowledge, including: people are most at risk from fire at night, when asleep; smoke alarms must be working to provide early warning; egress windows are meant to provide a second way out; in a fire, one should evacuate all occupants and notify the fire department before any other action (suppression, etc.); and, finally, to never re-enter a burning building.