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What to Do in Case of Fire

UIC Fire Alarm Procedures

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 UIC Police who will notify 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 who are unable to evacuate the building on their own should go to a stairwell landing and wait for evacuation assistance.  Call the UIC Police Department, if possible, at 312-355-5555 and tell them your location.

Once you are safely outside:

  • Call the UIC Police Department at 312-355-5555 to make sure they received notice of the activated fire alarm.
  • Alert authorities of those that may need rescue assistance.
  • DO NOT re-enter the building until you are informed by emergency response personnel that it is safe to return.

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 in which 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 properly operate a fire extinguisher.

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.

RACE Heading link

RACE poster

The poster shown, which summarizes the RACE procedure, should be posted near each work area. A printed wall poster is available from the Health and Safety Section (6-7233 or 6-SAFE).

PASS Heading link

PASS poster

The poster shown, which summarizes the PASS procedure, should be posted near each work area. A printed wall poster is available from the Health and Safety Section (6-7233 or 6-SAFE).