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Fire Drills

Residential Halls will receive at least two fire drills per academic semester. These drills will be documented on a Fire Drill Report Form. These forms will be forwarded to the Director of Residence Life for follow up.


Public Safety conducts monthly inspections of all common areas within the resident hall facilities for fire extinguishers, exit signs, exit doors, trash, improper storage and other safety violations. During the winter and spring breaks, in each resident hall, individual rooms are inspected for Prohibited Items listed below. These inspections are documented, and all violations are reported to the Residence Life Staff for proper follow-up and possible sanctioning. Any immediate safety violations are corrected at the time of the inspection. During the summer, all resident hall rooms are inspected by Facilities Services for damages and needed repairs.

Life & Fire Safety Sanctioning Information (pdf)

Fire Alarms

Public Safety should be called immediately at 717-336-6911 (x6911) for all fire alarms. Fire drills are held each semester to ensure that all students are familiar with evacuation procedures. Anytime a fire alarm sounds you must evacuate the building and remain outside until you are notified that it is safe to return by a Security Officer or Residence Life Staff member. During an evacuation, residents are to follow emergency procedures including any Residence Life Staff instructions.

Fire Safety Equipment

In the event of an actual fire, evacuate the building immediately. Pull the building's fire alarm (if the alarms are not already sounding), and once evacuation has begun, contact Campus Security. Pulling a false fire alarm, discharging a fire extinguisher or failure to comply with the above guidelines during an evacuation will result in disciplinary action. Sanctions may include suspension from the College. False fire alarm activation and fire extinguisher use will also result in a fine of at least $100.00 to the individual responsible or to a residence hall floor or building in the case that individual responsibility cannot be determined.

Fire extinguishers, fire alarms, pull boxes, smoke detectors, emergency lighting fixtures and exit lights are located in each building. This equipment should only be used in emergency situations. Misuse or tampering with any fire safety equipment will not be tolerated and may result in removal from the residence hall or suspension from the College. If you use a fire alarm or extinguisher for an actual emergency or fire, please notify College Security or Residence Life personnel.

Public Safety Services provides each apartment kitchen with a five pound fire extinguisher for their safety. This extinguisher must be inspected each month to ensure it is in good working order and mounted properly. The College provides apartment style living throughout the campus and has developed a policy to allow these inspections to be conducted as efficiently as possible. There is no extra charge for this service, but the residents are responsible for the condition of the fire extinguisher. The charge for a discharged fire extinguisher is $75.00 and if the extinguisher is lost or damaged beyond repair, a charge of $200.00 is levied. Any fire within an apartment must be reported, especially a fire that is extinguished with a fire extinguisher. Residents will not be fined for using a fire extinguisher to extinguish an actual accidental fire.

Once a month, a Public Safety Officer and Supervisor will visit each apartment. The visits will be conducted on Mondays through Thursdays from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. The Officers will knock several times and identify themselves if a resident answers. They will explain their visit and the resident may escort them to the kitchen. The extinguisher will be inspected. If no one answers the door the officers will enter the apartment and announce themselves. If no one answers to their announcement, the Officers will proceed with the inspection.

Prohibited Conduct

The following activities and actions are prohibited in residence halls and may result in judicial action:

  • Violation of College's Code of Conduct
  • Starting or fueling a fire of any size
  • Tampering with fire extinguishers, fire alarm systems or safety equipment
  • Possessing and/or burning candles, sterno, kerosene, candle lit potpourri burners, incense, or any other open flame item (birthday candles are excluded)
  • Smoking in any residence hall space
  • Draping or placing objects-including fabric-over lighting fixtures, smoke detectors, or fire sprinkler systems
  • Lending keys to others; copying keys; possession of keys that are not authorized for your use
  • Water fights, ball playing, bike riding, or similar activities which may cause harm to persons or property
  • Storage of bicycles, suitcases or cartons in stairwells or halls
  • Throwing any items into or out of windows
  • Altering, tampering, or dismantling any door closure; propping open any exterior door
  • Cooking food in individual rooms (other than in Micro ridges)
  • Solicitation of goods or services, except by Gettysburg College students who have received prior approval from the Office of College Life
  • Painting, wallpapering, or similarly decorating individual rooms or common areas unless prior approval is given by the Residence Life Office and Facilities Services
  • Repairing any damages or the removal or replacement of light bulbs in ceiling fixtures that have not been provided by the College Staff
  • Applying any articles directly to walls, closets, doors, furnishings or from the ceiling with tape, any adhesive material, screws, hooks, tacks, nails, etc. or any other way that causes damage. Poster putty is recommended, but needs to be completely removed from walls at check out
  • Removal, disassembling or altering of any furniture in a room
  • Using furniture for other than its intended use
  • Removing screens from windows
  • Installing wall partitions or paneling
  • Modifying electrical system by splicing electrical wires, hooking up additional electrical equipment, removal of outlet plates or light switches, tampering with circuit breakers or any part of the electrical system
  • Installing personal locks or chains on doors or windows
  • Sleeping in public areas of the residence halls by residents and/or guests
  • Public showing of commercially-produced, pre-recorded video cassettes and/or disks not covered by a College viewing license in public areas (purchased or rented video tapes are included)
  • Outside wiring-including hanging lights outside of windows and buildings
  • Entering the Quarry pond-this includes wading, swimming, and ice skating
  • Smoking in ANY residence hall space.

Prohibited Items

The following items are prohibited in residence halls:

  • Candles and/or Incense
  • Halogen Lamps
  • Fabric covering lights and fabric on walls
  • Answering machines (voice mail is provided)
  • Cooking devices (cooking is not allowed in students' rooms), specifically including, but not limited to, broilers, toaster ovens, electric skillets, hot plates, electric woks/frying pans, hotdog and hamburger cookers, and immersion coils (NOTE: popcorn poppers, hotpots, and coffee makers are permitted)
  • Microwaves other than a Micro fridge (Microwaves are permitted in apartments, limit 1)
  • Personal room refrigerators (unless you live in an apartment). Gettysburg College provides a Micro fridge unit for each room not in an apartment.
  • Room-heating devices, including all space heaters, kerosene or oil lamps, alcohol burners, and candles
  • Air conditioners unless jointly approved by the Health Center, the Residence Life Office and Facilities Services Office
  • Gasoline-powered items, such as motorcycles, mopeds, or parts thereof
  • Flammable and/or combustible liquids and/or chemicals
  • Drug paraphernalia
  • Overloaded electrical receptacles (more than three appliances connected to one outlet and multiple-plug adapters with more than two cords attached)
  • Fireworks, smoke bombs, sparklers, etc.
  • Light "dimmers," ceiling fans, or any other device that replaces, adds to, or interferes with any room/apartment/ building apparatus
  • Weight-lifting apparatus such as bar bells
  • Waterbeds
  • Dart boards/darts
  • Double-sided tape
  • Guns, knives and other weapons
  • Grills of any type
  • Animals or pets of any kind (except seeing-eye dogs and non-carnivorous fish in 10 gallon tanks or less). There will be no warnings. Pets will be relocated off campus by students immediately or taken by a College Official.
  • Portable washers, dryers, & dish washers
  • Storage of bicycles, suitcases or cartons in stairwells or halls


The preceding list is not all inclusive; any item that is a threat to public safety may be removed. The College will continually monitor all areas through staff visits and unannounced inspections by College staff. Prohibited items found will be confiscated and not returned until the student leaves the residence. In addition to confiscation, violators may pay a monetary fine and may be subject to judicial action, including possible expulsion from the residence.