Every hotel room includes a map, usually on the inside of the door, showing the location of all fire exits near your room. When you enter the room for the first time, study the routes to the exits. Then, walk the route to each fire exit. As you walk, choose one side of the corridor and trail your hand along the wall, counting the doorways between your room and the exit door. With this knowledge, you could find the exits even in the dark or in a hallway filled with smoke.

Back in your room, look out the windows. Is there an outcropping of roof on a lower floor that you could jump to, if you absolutely had to? What is directly below your window? Would it be possible to alert rescuers of your presence from that window?

When entering or leaving the room, take another look at that map, mentally tracing in your mind the route to the nearest exits. The repetition could one day save your life.

What to do if your hotel really is on fire:

  • Call for help on an outside line
  • If there is smoke already in the room, vent it by unlocking and opening the window.
  • Use towels, bedding, or even the mattress to block the space under the door.
  • Use water from the bathroom to douse the bedding until it’s soaking wet.
  • Use sheets and towels to block the air conditioning vents, which might carry smoke into the room from other parts of the hotel
  • Then, wait for rescue

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