Fire Safety

Electrical Appliances

Students may use clocks, sound equipment, computers, electric razors, hair dryers, electric fans, electric blankets, microwave ovens of 800 watts or less, refrigerators of 5 cubic feet or less, hot air popcorn poppers, and cool mist humidifiers in student housing. Items which the College strictly prohibits include, but are not limited to:

  • coffee makers (including Keurig)
  • crock pots
  • electric fry pans
  • toaster ovens
  • broilers
  • electric or gas stoves
  • air conditioners
  • cup warmers
  • deep fryers
  • hamburger and sandwich makers
  • bread makers
  • beer coolers
  • toasters
  • kegolators
  • popcorn poppers (other than hot air)
  • electric heaters
  • hot pots
  • hot plates
  • electric woks
  • any unit with a heating coil
  • rice cookers
  • soda machines
  • vending machines
  • hot tubs
  • swimming pools

*Torchiere type lamps with a halogen bulb, and other lamps with a halogen bulb greater than 60 watts, are not allowed. Incandescent light bulbs should not exceed 60 watts unless there is specific UL approval for a higher wattage.

Violations of any of the above policies will be fined and the item(s) will be immediately removed . The fines vary depending on the number of violations. Confiscated items will be donated to a local charity or discarded. If a student has any questions regarding the acceptability of a particular appliance, the Manager of Safety and Environmental Compliance should be contacted at x2406.

The wiring in some of the College’s older residence areas may not support heavy use of electrical appliances. If this is a problem in a residence, the College may need to limit the use of certain appliances and will consult with the students in the residence to resolve the problem.

Fire Safety

Williams is concerned about the safety of every individual on campus and therefore has very strict fire safety regulations. Students who do not observe these regulations jeopardize the safety of others on this campus and therefore, will be subject to disciplinary action and/or fines.

State Law requires that hallways and stairways be completely clear at all times. This means that you can not store anything in these areas (examples: shoes, clothes racks, boxes, furniture, and bicycles). The Williamstown Building Inspector and the Williamstown Fire Chief enforce these regulations. Items left in the hallways and stairwells will be removed and held at Facilities in the 37 House. Repeat violators will be fined $25.00 for each subsequent violation.

Fire and life safety programs must receive community–wide support in order to be effective. Cooperation from students at fire drills, announced and unannounced, is expected. Students who do not vacate in a timely manner are subject to disciplinary action, and to the possibility of additional drills, with the individual house responsible for all costs associated with repeated drills.

Students who misuse, tamper or otherwise disturb fire safety equipment, including smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, fire extinguishers, pull stations, and fire doors, or activate fire alarms due to smoking are subject to a $250.00 fine as well at the cost of restoring the equipment. Smoke machines are not allowed in student residences for any reason. Alarm activations due to using a smoke machine will result in a $250.00 fine. These students will be referred to the Dean’s Office and may be dismissed or suspended from the College.

Candles (including those used for religious purposes), incense, and other open flame devices are not allowed in residential buildings. Students who want to light candles for religious purposes need to see the Chaplain’s Office to make arrangements.

Possession of Candles, Incense, Prohibited Appliances, and Halogen Torchiere Lamps
1st offense: $50.00 fine and the student will be called into the Safety and Environmental Compliance Office.
2nd offense: $100.00 fine and the student will be called into the Safety and Environmental Compliance Office and required to view a fire safety video.
3rd offense: $100.00 fine and referral to the Dean’s Office for disciplinary action that may result in suspension or dismissal from the College.

Grills

Propane and charcoal grills may be used on campus provided that they are at least 25 feet away from all structures.

Flammable Liquids and Gases

Flammable liquids such as lighter fluid and flammable gases such as butane and propane in quantities larger than 4 fl. oz. (118mL) are prohibited in all residential buildings.

Outside Fire Pits

Williams has one area behind the tennis courts near Poker Flats that is designated for outside fires. This area can be reserved by contacting Student Life. Outside fire pits and open burning are not permitted in other areas on campus.

Torches & Extended Reach Lighters

Butane and propane style torches, table-top torches, micro torches and extended reach lighters are prohibited in all residential buildings.

Lighters & Matches

Students are permitted to carry personal “Bic” and “Zippo” style lighters and matches on campus and may use them in areas where smoking is permitted on campus.

Failure to Leave the Building for any Fire Alarm or Fire Drills
1st offense: student will be called into the Safety and Environmental Compliance Office and will receive a written warning.
2nd offense: $100.00 fine and the student will be called into the Safety and Environmental Compliance Office and required to view a fire safety video.
3rd offense: $100.00 fine and referral to the Dean’s Office for disciplinary action that may result in suspension or dismissal from the College.

Tampering with Life Safety Equipment
Students who misuse, tamper or otherwise disturb fire safety equipment, including smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, fire extinguishers, pull stations, fire doors, activate fire alarms due to smoking or the removal of batteries from carbon monoxide detectors or cover detectors are subject to a $250.00 fine as well at the cost of restoring the equipment. Student will be called into the Safety and Environmental Compliance Office and will be required to view a fire safety video. Students involved in a 2nd offense will be fined $500.00 and will be referred to the Dean’s Office for disciplinary action that may result in suspension or dismissal from the College.

Placing Lights or Items on Sprinkler Pipes or Sprinkler Heads
1st offense: student will be issued a written warning and/or called into the Safety and Environmental Compliance Office.
2nd offense: $50.00 fine and student called into the Safety and Environmental Compliance Office and required to view fire safety video.
3rd offense: $100.00 fine and referral to the Dean’s Office for disciplinary action that may result in suspension or dismissal from the College.

Improper Disposal of Cigarettes and Smoking
1st offense: $250.00 fine and the student will be called into the Safety and Environmental Compliance Office.
2nd offense: $500.00 fine and student will be called into the Safety and Environmental Compliance Office to view a fire safety video. Additionally, the student may be referred to the Dean’s Office for disciplinary action that may result in suspension or dismissal from the College. Students are held responsible for the condition of their room, suite, or entry common area. If the responsible parties cannot be identified for the improper disposal of cigarettes, the house, entry or suite will be charged with the fine.

All building are smoke–free—Individuals are not permitted to smoke within 25 feet of any building on campus. Students smoking in the residence halls will result in the following fines.
1st offense: $250.00 fine.
2nd offense: $500.00 fine and referred to the Dean’s Office.

These fines and regulations will be progressive over your four years as a student at Williams College. If you have any questions about the policy, please contact the Manager of Safety and Environmental Compliance, at x2406.

Fireworks
Per Massachusetts General Law no person shall possess or explode any fireworks. Students found in possession of fireworks at anytime will be fined $100.00 per incident and referred to the Dean’s Office.

Student Safety
For safety reasons students are not allowed on college roofs, unauthorized balconies, construction sites or permit required confined spaces. Students found in violation will be fined $250.00 per incident and referred to the Dean’s Office.