Image: Wikimedia Commons/ Arian Kriesch

Self-isolating York students told to wait inside during a fire

Students self-isolating at the University of York were told to wait in their rooms during a fire while other students were allowed to leave first.

The university’s Health and Safety Services told students to wait “to allow non-isolating individuals to exit”, according to the BBC.

288 students and staff at York University have currently tested positive for Covid-19.

While the university has since altered its advice, it is unclear whether this is relevant for self-isolating pupils.

Self-isolating students were emailed with he guidance allowing “social distancing from non-isolating residents”.

All students are required to undertake a mandatory fire safety induction and this clearly states that all students should evacuate the building immediately

–University of York spokesperson

The guidance stated that “if you are self isolating and the fire system in your accommodation building is activated”…” stay in your room for one minute then make your way to the nearest refuge”.

Self-isolating students would then contact the security services and wait to be told if they needed to evacuate.

The North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service were made aware of this guidance and have subsequently contacted the university with new guidance.

A University of York spokesperson said that “our advice and guidance has been updated and changed” and “we take the health and safety of our students and staff extremely seriously”.

The spokesperson also remarked that “all students are required to undertake a mandatory firesafety induction and this clearly states that all students should evacuate the building immediately, meeting at the designated fire assembly point”, and that social distancing guidelines should be adhered to.

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