|Following strict guidelines helps to ensure safety
mean MUSC staff will begin to decorate work areas to create a festive
atmosphere. The Occupational Safety and Health Fire and Life Safety
Programs is providing tips for a safe work environment.
There are requirements for decorations within the hospital, university
and all support facilities. Because of the potential life safety
hazards of the hospitals, there are strict guidelines for the use and
placement of decorations and natural cut vegetation.
This information is distributed so staff members have time to properly
plan, purchase and place decorations to comply with the International
Fire Codes, National Fire Protection Association Life Safety Code 10
and MUSC policy.
Employees are asked to follow this policy and understand that it will
be enforced to minimize fire hazards.
All personnel should review the guidelines prior to purchasing
materials and decorating for seasonal holidays:
- Decorations shall
not be placed in any area that will obscure an exit or interfere with
the path of evacuation. Trees must not be located in corridors or near
any source of ignition.
- Candles or other
open flame decorations are not allowed.
- Decorations must
not be attached to, or obstruct, ceiling tiles, sprinkler heads, smoke
detectors, fire extinguishers or exit signs.
- Corridor doors
must not be wrapped with any material or have excessive decorations
- Extension cords
are prohibited in MUSC facilities and health care occupancies. An
independent laboratory tested and approved (UL) surge protector may be
allowed (maximum 6 feet) in constantly monitored areas. Surge
protectors shall not be connected in series.
- Plug-in air
fresheners and scents are prohibited.
Natural cut vegetation, decorations
decorations including, but not limited to, paper cutouts, plastic wall
hangings, banners, ornaments and posters are prohibited in health care
areas unless of such limited size or quantity that will not contribute
to the development or spread of fire. All combustible ornaments and
decorations must be treated with a flame retardant. Retardants may
deteriorate during storage and handling; therefore, decorations must be
retreated at least every five years with documented proof immediately
available. Maintain all documentation and the actual container as
evidence of the treatment of any decoration.
- Natural cut
decorations are prohibited; fire retardant artificial trees that are FM
or UL listed and used in accordance with manufacturers’ instructions
may be authorized on a case-by-case basis.
- Natural cut trees,
wreaths and garlands will be allowed only in facilities other than
health care occupancies if treated with approved flame retardants.
Guidelines for any lighting used
- Water levels for
real trees must be checked and maintained on a regular basis.
Vegetation that has dried out shall be immediately removed from the
facility. It cannot be placed in or obstruct any means of escape.
- Use only UL tested
and approved cool lamp variety bulbs (manufacturers tag must be
- Use only in
constantly monitored areas.
- Attach only to
non-metallic, non-combustible surfaces.
- Do not use in
patient rooms or areas where oxygen is stored or in use.
connections must be free of splices and checked routinely for damage.
If any damage is found, remove the item immediately.
Guidelines and safety information for
- Lighting shall be
used only on artificial vegetation in the health care facilities.
• MUSC Fire and Life Safety, OSHP, discourages outdoor gas-fueled
turkey fryers (which immerse the turkey in hot oil) on hospital and
• The National Fire Prevention Association discourages use
because of a documented significant danger of fire. NFPA urges fried
turkeys be purchased from professional establishments, such as grocery
stores or specialty food retailers.
• The turkey fryers currently on the market are not
Underwriters Laboratory approved, and thus have failed or cannot meet
the required safety standards.
• The use of turkey fryers by consumers may lead to
devastating injuries and destruction of property. The oil is heated to
350 degrees Fahrenheit or more, and its vapors can ignite.
• With commercial fryers, temperature control units are
installed to shut off fuel if the cooking oil ignites. Suppression
systems standard on commercial fryers extinguish any flames.
• Most commonly in use of non-commercial turkey fryers,
fire occurs when the frozen or semi-frozen turkey is lowered into the
oil. The water in the turkey causes the oil to expand and overflow the
cooker, and the dripping oil is ignited when it reaches the open flame.
This policy was established to prevent fire, injuries and loss of life.
Any decoration not in compliance with the above guidelines must be
removed. Any questions may be directed to Fire and Life Safety,
Occupational Safety and Health Programs by calling 792-3604.
Friday, Dec. 3, 2010