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Door markers for senior housing apartments

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  • Door markers for senior housing apartments

    Hey all,

    So, a 72-unit senior housing unit recently opened in our fire district and is now taking residential applications. For an upcoming drill we plan on touring the facility along with our mutual aid fire departments; this will be the third tour of the facility.

    Tonight at our monthly meeting we were discussing ways of identifying the doors of residents that might have special health needs - maybe decreased mobility, sight, hearing or cognitive capabilities - in the event of a fire or emergency evacuation. We threw out a few ideas like small decals or unique stickers that could be placed near the bottom of the door. Our thought was to use something inconspicuous so as to not draw too much attention from the apartment owner, but something that we (firefighters) would know what to look for in low-light situations.

    Just wondering if any of you have done something similar.

    Thanks for your input.

    ~Skojo

  • #2
    You would have to update your info quite often. Turnover could be high in such an occupancy. If it was not religiously updated you could end up with a messy situation. Why not just ask the front desk to maintain a current list?

    Comment


    • #3
      I hope they did better with EMS access than a facility near me - the elevator won't hold a stretcher unless you sit the patient up - hard to do if you're doing CPR.

      There are no special markings on the doors in that facility, and (knock on wood) that hasn't been a problem.

      The residents tend to look out for each other - oftimes as you walk the halls, you'll discover apartment doors open, in fact.

      I would submit that significant, and ongoing, outreach would serve you well. Fire prevention, fall prevention, and a good deal of familiarity with the layout not only of the facility, but of the apartments themselves, would be very useful.

      As capnjack points out, a system using any sort of marker requires maintenance. Usually such a system starts out great, but as the maintainers move on, it falls into disrepair. You might also run into pushback from residents who might not want their "condition" advertised.
      Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

      Everyone goes home. Safety begins with you.

      Comment


      • #4
        Both good thoughts, especially re: the ongoing maintenance. We had talked to the daytime duty manager about having a "roll call" list / accountability list in the event of emergency evacuation. And some of the residents, at least during a recent visit, seemed to express interest in some type of responsibility...floor warden, floor watch, call it what you will. This is kinda new territory for us, so anyt and all suggestions are appreciated!

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        • #5
          One of the depts I'm on has a special needs registry that's on the CAD type dispatch screen. We don't have any large units in our district, but the special needs of a resident at any given address show up as a PDF file. Like it was said before, it would have to be updated religiously to be useful.

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          • #6
            Doesn't sound like a workable idea. But talk to management to keep an updated list of the residents with room assignments and special needs. Have them keep that list at the front desk or in a cabinet that can be accessed with a key that is in the Knox box.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Too_Old View Post
              Doesn't sound like a workable idea. But talk to management to keep an updated list of the residents with room assignments and special needs. Have them keep that list at the front desk or in a cabinet that can be accessed with a key that is in the Knox box.
              Perhaps one of these "fireproof file boxes" people store keepsakes in - attached an inside wall near Knox box location (which is outside, of course).
              Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

              Everyone goes home. Safety begins with you.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by captnjak View Post
                You would have to update your info quite often. Turnover could be high in such an occupancy. If it was not religiously updated you could end up with a messy situation. Why not just ask the front desk to maintain a current list?
                This is what we do, as the good Captn points out the turnover rate and daily goings on make relying on multiple signs way too difficult. That said, we also ask them to be very specific when they put the one "approved" handicap label on the door. We ask those to be people who are instructed to stay in their room utilizing their "defend in place" policy. All others are instructed by facility policies to exit or at the minimum move to a fire rated stairwell if they are not mobile enough to traverse stairs. Those who are totally immobile get the true blue handicap signage. The 24 hr desk is supposed to track all the people in and out, but alas, that is never 100%...

                All of this is done when working with facilities to write or update their emergency action plans.
                Last edited by RFDACM02; 02-21-2019, 02:48 PM. Reason: keyboard caused misspelled words

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