How To Escape During a Hotel Fire

What are the very first things you should do, if you wake up in your hotel room to the smell of smoke? First, don't panic. Many people die in fires needlessly, simply because they panicked  instead of thinking. There are effective actions you can take, either to escape the building or to keep yourself relatively safe until help arrives.

Before you do anything, pull some clothes on and secure your room key. If you leave the room, but escape is impossible, you need to be able to get back in and protect yourself from heat and smoke until you can be rescued.

Assess the situation: Assess the situation: Crawl to the door on hands and knees, so you can breathe the fresher air near the floor. Touch it with your hand—only briefly, because it may be very hot. If the door is relatively cool to the touch, open it just a crack to take a look. Be ready to slam it closed, if necessary.

Exit the room with care: You may need it again, so keep the key and close the door to protect the room's interior. Crawl on hands and knees, where the air is more breathable, and move toward the nearest emergency exit (never use the elevator to escape a fire).

Precautions on the stairs: Always hold the handrail while walking down the stairs. There will be other people, many of them panicked, all trying to escape. If you reach the bottom floor, exit to the street and safety.

If, instead you starting noticing smoke in the lower stairwells, it is a sign that there is denser smoke further down. Do not continue down the stairs. Turn around immediately and climb back up, all the way to the roof. Once on the roof, prop the door wide open. It will draw air up the stairwell, helping to clear the smoke gathered at the bottom. This is the only door you should leave open when moving through a building on fire. Move to the side of the roof from which the wind is coming and remain there until help comes.