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How should hotel guests prepare themselves for fire?

The majority of hotel fires in the United States are small. Seventy-three percent of them do not spread from the building they started in, and 18 percent don't even make it outside the room. Nevertheless, getting caught in a hotel fire is dangerous, and there are some things that hotel guests should do to prepare themselves in case of a fire.

Most hotel guests never even think about fire safety. After all, they are usually on vacation enjoying themselves, or they are on a business trip and their minds are on work. At the very least, though, hotel guests should always read the fire escape route, which they can find posted inside their room — typically on the door or near the door.

Also, hotel guests should familiarize themselves with the grounds and property on which they are staying. Even before checking into a room, guests should make sure the hotel has a sprinkler system and, at the very least, a smoke alarm. Early warning systems are critical for fire safety, so guests have sufficient time to escape their rooms and the building before a fire gets bad.

Know where the stairwells and exits are in relation to the room, and count the number of doors from the room to the stairwell. When a hotel is filled with smoke, guests don't have their eyes to rely on. They'll have to feel their way around, so knowing the way without seeing is crucial in an emergency like this.

If you or your family members were injured in a hotel fire, the hotel may be financially liable for medical costs associated with those injuries and other damages. By speaking with a Florida personal injury lawyer, you can evaluate liability and the chances of financial recovery in your case.

Source: Telegram & Gazette, "State fire marshal gives tips on hotel/motel safety," Kim Ring, Jan. 14, 2016

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