U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated average of 4,980 structure fires in educational properties in 2011–2015, annually. These fires caused annual averages of one civilian death, 70 civilian injuries, and $70 million in direct property damage.
Committed to fire prevention and safety, the Environmental Health and Safety Department strives to keep Mines Campus as free from fire-related hazards as possible. Each year experienced EHS personnel, Facilities Management employees, and the Golden Fire Department inspect campus buildings to identify and correct deficiencies in equipment, material storage, and procedures that could compromise the safety of persons at the School. Beyond building inspection with the Golden Fire Department, EHS personnel frequently enter laboratories with the goal of increasing safety awareness including mitigating the risk of unintended fire.
Building evacuation drills are conducted each year in academic and residential buildings with alarm systems. The intent of these exercises is to ensure the correct functionality of the building alarm system, familiarize occupants with the visual and audible alarms, and identify any deficiencies in the evacuation of buildings.
Training sessions are available for campus personnel on topics such as fire prevention in an office or lab setting, safe storage and use of chemicals with high fire hazards, and hands-on fire extinguisher use. Mines EHS personnel are also available to consult with members of the Mines Community concerning fire code requirements for research work or any other question relating to fire safety.