Off campus is generally a very safe place with a low level of crime. We would however recommend you adopt a few simple precautions to minimise any risk:
- Travel in groups of two or more, even during daytime, whenever possible
- Avoid dark and narrow alleyways and quieter areas even if it seems tempting to take a short cut
- Even if it takes a little while longer, take diversions into more populated areas, if there is a suitable route
- Be aware of your surroundings at all times – do not use mobile phones/headphones whilst walking
- Buy a small torch rather than using the light on your mobile as a torch
- Do not carry large amounts of cash or valuable items
- Save the number for the Police and Campus Security 024 7652 2222 to your mobile
- Keep your phone secure in your pocket rather than in a bag, so that you can call the police
- Call the Police on 999 if you have time, or raise the alarm locally by screaming/shouting/running, if you believe you are about to become a victim of crime
For further safety tips, visit the Campus Security Webpage
If you experience or witness a crime, you can report it in the following ways:
Urgent police response required?
If you think you, or others, are in immediate danger right now, dial 999 and request an urgent police and/or medical response. You should do this when:
- An offender is still present and you are in danger
- You or anyone else is seriously hurt
- You think the offender may return
Please also complete the Incident Report Form if you have reported using 999.
Non-emergency police report?
If a crime has been committed and you wish to report it to the police, dial 101 (non-emergency number for the UK) as well as completing the Incident Report Form.
Please remember that the University and SU are there to listen and to support you. Please get in touch with them if you have experienced an incident or you have witnessed that has happened to somebody else. They can offer a range of support, discuss your options and ensure that you get any help that you need.
Student occupied houses may be more vulnerable to burglary, but the risk to your property can be reduced if you follow these guidelines:
- Lock ALL external doors and windows when house/room is unoccupied, use window locks where fitted, even if you are only leaving for a short time
- Using a UV marker pen/engraver, postcode all valuable property with your home address and include your house number e.g. 10/CV4 7BB
- Never put items which may be attractive to a burglar in view of the window
- Open curtains during the day, close them at night and leave a light on, preferably using a time switch when the house is empty. Try to make the house look lived in.
- Ensure all valuable items are adequately insured
When leaving the house for the vacation you are advised to take all valuables with you. Further information on crime prevention can be found online.
Should a break-in occur, please follow the following procedure:
- Inform the Police, who will visit the house to carry out an investigation. You should obtain an incident number from them for insurance purposes. In an emergency call 999 or 101 to report a break-in.
- If, as a result of the break in, the property is insecure call Warwick Accommodation 024 76 523772 or out of office hours the Main Gate Security Lodge on 024 7652 2083. They will arrange temporary boarding up until Warwick Accommodation can arrange a permanent repair
- Complete the Burglary/Vandalism Incident Report Form
Fire Action Plan - A fire can develop and spread in a house very quickly, therefore it is essential for you to plan what action everyone should take to escape if a fire starts. Escape routes must be kept clear of obstruction at all times. In properties where the under stair area forms a part of the escape route, you must not use this area for storage.
Smoke Alarms – All properties on the Warwick Accommodation Leasing Scheme have hard wired smoke detectors fitted and most will have a heat sensor in the kitchen. These alarms are a mains electrical appliance, do not remove the cover or insert anything into the alarm. Residents are responsible for carrying out weekly smoke and heat detectors checks. Instructions on how to carry out these weekly checks can be found in Warwick MyFiles.
All houses are equipped with a fire blanket and in some cases a fire extinguisher.
If a fire breaks out in your home, try to stay calm and follow the steps below:
- If you can safely do so, close the door of the room where the fire has started and close all other doors behind you to delay the spread of fire.
- Before opening a closed door, use the back of your hand to touch it. Don't open it if it feels warm - the fire will be on the other side.
- Get everyone out. Telephone the fire brigade on 999 from a mobile or neighbour's house.
- Never go back into your home until a fire officer has told you it is safe.
- If you are cut off by fire or smoke, close the door nearest to the fire and use towels or sheets to block any gaps to prevent smoke spreading into the room.
- Go to the window. If the room becomes smoky, go down to floor level - it's easier to breathe because the smoke will rise upwards.
- Open the window and shout "FIRE!" to try to attract the attention of others who can alert the Fire Brigade. Wait for the Fire Brigade, they should arrive in a matter of minutes.
- If you are in immediate danger, drop bedding or cushions to the ground to break your fall from the window.
- If your clothing catches fire, lie down immediately, to prevent flames from burning your face – then roll across the floor. At the same time try to wrap yourself in a blanket, coat or towel.
- If someone else’s clothing catches fire, force them to the ground. Wrap a carpet, coat etc around them, take care that your own clothing doesn’t catch fire as well. Seek medical aid at once.
Fire Hazards- Candles, oil burners, fireworks, joss sticks, live coals, shishas, hookahs, flammable liquids and gases etc are a potential source of damage as well as a fire hazard and must not be used in properties.
Plugs and Flexes- Some electrical appliances are designed to be left on all the time. Check the manufacturer's instructions or check with the shop where you bought it. All other electrical appliances should be switched off and unplugged when not in use. Remove plugs carefully. Don't remove them by pulling the flex. Use a three pin plug which conforms to the British Standard and carries the kite mark. Do not overload the socket by using several adapters, as it can cause it to overheat and catch fire. Don’t take electrical appliances into the bathroom. Don’t handle plugs with wet hands.
Wiring - Look out for warning signs of dangerous wiring, hot plugs and sockets, fuses that blow for no obvious reason, lights flickering, brown scorch marks on sockets and plugs.
Cookers - Always make sure that saucepans are in a safe position on the cooker. Flexes from electrical equipment, such as kettles and toasters, should be kept well away from the cooker and tea towels should never be dried over the cooker. Never leave a pan unattended with the heat turned on and make sure that ovens are not left on after use.
Heaters- Portable electric heaters should not be used in the property. The exception would be if your central heating system was not working and could not be repaired quickly, in this instance you will be issued with heaters along with guidance notes for their use. Damage caused by a portable heater could invalidate the Landlords insurance and you could be held responsible for all costs incurred.
Electric Blankets - The University does not recommend the use of electric blankets as many fires and deaths are caused by blankets being left accidentally switched on. As with all electrical equipment it is important that you follow the manufacturer's instructions.
Small Electrical Items. - Please take care to unplug items such as hair straighteners or irons when not in use. Do not use or leave these items on the floor as this often results in damage to furniture and carpets.
Chip Pan/Deep Fat Frying - Deep frying is a common cause of house fires and should only undertaken with great care! Never fill the pan more than one third full with fat or oil. Never leave the pan unattended with the heat on - not even for a few seconds. Dry the chips/food before putting them in the pan. Before frying, test the temperature of the oil by putting in a small piece of bread. If the bread crisps up quickly then the oil is ready. Never put the chips/food in the pan if the oil begins to give off smoke. Turn off the heat and leave the oil to cool, otherwise it could catch fire. Use a thermostatically controlled deep fat fryer where possible.
If a Chip Pan Fire Occurs, get out, call the fire brigade and stay out of the property
If you can tackle the fire safely, DON'T MOVE THE PAN, turn off the heat if it is safe to do so but NEVER lean over the pan to reach the cooker controls. Use the fire blanket or a damp tea cloth, or towel, to cover the pan to smother the flames. NEVER THROW WATER ONTO THE FLAMES, as this will cause the fire to spread. Leave the pan to cool down for at least thirty minutes.
Fires may also be caused by:
- Careless use of cigarettes. We recommend that you don't smoke inside your property for the health and safety of all housemates. Never smoke in bed
- Carelessly discarded cigarettes and matches and overloaded ashtrays. Never empty recently used ashtrays into waste paper bins or baskets.
- Coiled extension leads. These generate a great deal of heat and should only be used like that for a few minutes at the most. Preferably uncoil the whole length before use
- Drying clothes/towels. If dried too close to an open source of heat they could ignite or they could topple onto the fire itself
- Overloading electrical sockets and adapters. NEVER run other electrical appliances from a socket already running an electric fire or heater
- Candles, oil burners, live coals, joss sticks etc. They are a potential source of damage as well as a fire hazard and should not be used
The main switch for your electricity supply is situated near the meter and fuse box, or in the case of a modern consumer unit it is on the unit itself and should be clearly marked. Make sure you can access the fuse box and meter easily. Keep a torch nearby, so you can see what you are doing if the lights go out.
All the electrical wiring in University managed properties has been checked and passed by a qualified electrician. If the house is new or has been rewired in the last few years, it may have circuit breakers instead of fuses, Circuit breakers are switches that automatically switch off in circumstances when a fuse would have blown. Reset the switch to 'on' after disconnecting the appliance that caused the problem. It may be necessary to unplug all appliances and then switch off the main isolation switch to reset. If the circuit breaker continues to switch off, contact Warwick Accommodation.
There are some simple rules to ensure the safe use of electrical appliances:
- Remove plugs carefully - not by pulling the flex
- Use only good quality plugs that conform to British Standards. Do not plug a two pin plug into a socket without a three-pin adapter which confirms to British Standards
- Never run an electrical appliance from a light fitting
- If you need to use an extension cable, do not use a longer one than you need. Do not keep extension cables coiled, as they may overheat
- Do not run cables (including extension cables) under carpets or rugs as the protective covering on the cable can be damaged
- Do not overload wall sockets. If you need to use an adaptor, use a multi-socket trailing adaptor, not a multi-way adaptor that plugs straight into the socket
- Do not exceed the recommended bulb wattage for light fittings
- Do not put too high a fuse in plugs
- Never use mains powered equipment in bathrooms or near water
- Do not leave electrical appliances switched on or on standby when you are not using them
- Electric blankets are a common cause of fires. It is recommended that you get them serviced every three years or as recommended by the manufacturer
- Do not touch or use any electrical items that you think are unsafe. Report them to your Property Manager
The cost of any work undertaken at your request by any electrical contractor will be your responsibility, so if in doubt about the electrical safety of your dwelling, first contact should be made with Warwick Accommodation
All gas appliances in University managed properties have been checked and serviced by a registered qualified engineer. A copy of the gas safety certificate will be available in MyFiles. Your gas appliances are covered by a maintenance contract. Please see the notice displayed on or near the boiler in your property. In the event of any failure, the tenants should ring the Maintenance Company covering the property directly.
If a gas escape is suspected the mains gas supply should be turned off at the meter and the Gas Emergency helpline contacted immediately on 0800 111999. Do not use any light switches, smoke or use any source of ignition.
Carbon Monoxide - Carbon Monoxide is a poisonous gas which can kill quickly with no warning. Don't mistake the symptoms for a hangover. Signs to look out for are headaches, nausea, breathlessness, collapse, dizziness and loss of consciousness.
Although carbon monoxide is invisible and difficult to detect, there are ways that you can see whether an appliance (fires, heaters, central heating boilers water heaters or cookers) may be dangerous. These include:
- The pilot light continually blowing out
- An orange or yellow flame rather than a blue one
- A black, brown or scorched area on the appliance
- A musty smell or signs of soot
- More condensation than normal on windows
If you suspect that a gas appliance is faulty, turn it off and inform the Warwick Accommodation. In an emergency call the Gas Emergency helpline on 0800 111 999. If you feel unwell, seek medical help right away.
The University recognises that due to the range of ages of property that make up the off campus student accommodation portfolio there is the potential for them to contain asbestos materials. The University will therefore require an asbestos survey for each property (built before the year 2000) and will ensure that where asbestos is identified it is risk assessed and any required remediation or removal work is carried out.
For all identified asbestos materials in good condition, an annual re-inspection will be carried out by the University Asbestos Management Team to review the risk assessments and make appropriate recommendations for any work required to Warwick Accommodation.
Students are reminded that they should report any kind of damage to their room or other areas of the residence using the online fault reporting system where possible and the University will ensure that appropriate measures are taken to rectify the damage promptly.
In order to maintain a healthy water system in your property it is important to:
- Make sure the hot water supply is hot and the cold water is cold. Report any problems to your boiler maintenance provider (this information should be on your boiler and in MyFiles) or Warwick Accommodation
- Use or run every outlet at least once a week. This includes taps, WC's, showers, washing machines and outside taps. If you are away for more than a few days, run your shower for two minutes with the screen or curtain closed before entering
- Clean showerheads and taps outlets regularly to prevent build-up of lime scale and harmful bacteria
It may be a good idea to assemble a small first aid kit for use in the house and keep it close at hand in case of an emergency.
Meningitis and Septicaemia are life threatening diseases. Knowing the signs and symptoms and acting quickly to get medical help can save lives. Further information can be found online.