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Fire/Building Evacuation

General Building Evacuation Procedures Heading link

In preparation for an event that may require you to evacuate a building, it’s important to know what you should do beforehand to be better prepared to evacuate the building safely and efficiently should the need arise. Remember to keep calm in emergency situations to help lead you to safety.

  1. Identify the two nearest exits to your area. Knowing two exit paths should you find one blocked by smoke, fire, or other hazards is important.
  2. Leave all personal items behind.
  3. Identify the location of the nearest fire alarm pull station in your building. This is the best way to alert others of the need to evacuate.
  4. Follow the instructions of emergency response personnel. These personnel will include the Campus Safety, Maintenance, Chicago Fire Department, UIC Police and the UIC Environmental Health and Safety Office, and possibly other emergency response personnel.
  5. Once the fire alarm is activated, leave immediately through the nearest and safest exit. Rescue anyone in the immediate danger area if you can safely do so. Identify and utilize the nearest AREA OF REFUGE to escort those who cannot be immediately evacuated; remember to notify a First Responder of their location.
  6. DO NOT attempt to use the elevators as an exit.
  7. If you cannot evacuate the building without assistance and there is immediate danger (smoke/fire) in your area, you should proceed to the nearest stairwell landing and wait for evacuation assistance. If there is no immediate danger, you may enter any room with a door that can be shut and a phone that can be used. Use the phone to call the Campus Safety Unit. Their emergency phone number is 312-427-3727 ext. 511, or 511 from a campus phone. When using a cell phone, you will be connected to Chicago Dispatch FD/PD. Be prepared to tell them your location so they know where to find you.
  8. Close but do not lock doors as you evacuate to avoid the spread of smoke and fire.
  9. Once you’re outside, proceed to move at least 50 feet away from the building so that you’re far enough away from any danger that may exist, such as shattering glass. This also gives emergency response personnel enough room to do their job.
  10. Once the alarm is activated, ensure that First Responders have been notified. Remain calm, and be prepared to tell them the name, address of the building, and any additional relevant information.

UIC Fire Alarm Procedures Heading link

All building occupants are required by UIC policy to follow and adhere to the University Fire Plan, which consists of the RACE and PASS procedures.


When there is a fire in your area, perform the RACE procedures:

1.  Rescue anyone in the immediate danger area if you can safely do so.

2.  Activate the nearest fire alarm pull station to activate the building fire alarm system. The fire alarm will sound throughout the building and notify others of the need to evacuate. The activated fire alarm will also signal the Chicago Fire Department.

3.  Confine the fire by closing doors (do not lock) to the fire scene and securing potentially dangerous substances and/or equipment.

4.  Evacuate the building by the nearest or alternate exit if possible. Do not use elevators during an evacuation! Those unable to evacuate the building alone should go to a stairwell landing and wait for evacuation assistance.  Call for First Responders, if possible, notify the Campus Safety Unit and tell them your location.

Things You should know:

  • Location of fire alarm pull stations in your area.
  • Location of two nearest exits from your area.
  • Location of fire extinguishers and their use.
  • Name, address, or building number where you work or live.


If an attempt is made to extinguish a fire, ensure that you don’t put yourself in danger. You should know how to deal with the immediate situation and be knowledgeable in the use of fire extinguishers. It is also recommended to have another person with you in case a problem occurs, and immediate help is required. Always make sure to keep the exit at your back so you can easily escape if necessary.

PASS procedures: This is how to operate a fire extinguisher properly.

1.    Pull the pin, release the lock latch, or press the puncture lever.

2.   Aim the extinguisher nozzle, horn, or nose at the base of the fire from a safe distance.

3.   Squeeze or press the handle to discharge the fire extinguishing agent.

4.   Sweep from side to side until the fire is out. Watch the fire area. If the fire re-ignites, repeat the process. Fire extinguisher types do vary so read the instructions for proper use.

What to Do if You Smell Smoke Heading link

Calder’s Flamingo

A smell of smoke that cannot be identified must be reported to the Campus Safety and Security Department immediately so that it can be investigated. If you are instructed to activate the nearest fire alarm pull box. – DO SO!

Unification Locations

Occupants exiting 300 S. State St should gather on the south end of Pritzker Park.

Occupants exiting 19 W. Plymouth Ct should gather by the Calder’s Flamingo outside the Federal Building at 230 S. Dearborn. (walk north to Jackson St, then west until Dearborn to cross & then north on Dearborn) *see image

Occupants exiting 19 W. Jackson should gather by the Calder’s Flamingo outside the Federal Building at 230 S. Dearborn.  (walk west on Jackson St, cross at Dearborn & then go north) *see image

Once outside and away from the building:

  • Remember, when crossing intersections, be mindful of approaching First Responders.
  • Alert First Responders with pertinent information regarding people needing assistance or the location of the smoke/fire.
  • DO NOT re-enter the building until you are informed by emergency response personnel that it is safe to return.



  • UIC Law School 300 S. State Chicago, IL 60604 TX# 312-427-2737
  • Campus Safety & Security Extension 511
  • Chicago Bar Association 321 S. Plymouth Ct Chicago, IL 60604 TX# 312-427-3989
  • DIAL 911 from any school phone or cell phone for any EMERGENCY SITUATION

First Responder Plans and Maps Heading link

The maps of each building are included in the guides below, including a unification location.