Fire safety

Your tenancy advisor will tell you about the fire alarm system in your building.

There will either be an automatic fire alarm or you may have an alarm system you need to switch on manually.

What to do in a fire

If you're in an upgraded apartment - a fire alarm will automatically sound throughout the building and this will automatically alert Fire and Emergency New Zealand.

If you're in a property where there's a manual system - turn on the fire alarm.

Then you should:

  • Switch off your appliances
  • Shout 'Fire! Fire! Fire!' to warn others
  • Crawl low and fast to escape any smoke - 'Get Down, Get Low, Get Out!'
  • Take your evacuation tag with you - it's by your front door
  • Shut doors behind you to slow the spread of fire
  • Go to the fire action board on the ground floor (use the stairs, not the lift) and put your evacuation tag on the board
  • Go to your planned meeting place
  • Get out and stay out; do not go back inside
  • Dial 111 Fire and Emergency New Zealand from a safe phone

Dial 111

You will need to tell Fire and Emergency New Zealand your:

  • street name
  • house number
  • nearest intersection
  • city and suburb.

Wait outside for Fire and Emergency New Zealand to arrive. Tell them where the fire is and if anyone is still inside.

False alarm in an upgraded apartment

If your fire alarm sounds, but there isn't a fire in your apartment (for example, if you are cooking or if you have burnt your toast):

  • Push the 'fire alarm silence' button on the control panel in your hallway.
  • Open the windows to let fresh air in.
  • Don't open your front door to clear smoke because it could set off the fire alarm for the whole building.


As a City Housing tenant you are responsible for practising fire safety. These tips are a helpful reminder:


  • Never leave cooking food unattended.
  • If cooking oil or fat is smoking, turn off the heat.
  • Put out oil or fat fires with a pot lid or oven tray and don't take the fire outside.

Electrical equipment:

  • Don't overload your power points.
  • Turn off your electric blanket at the switch on the wall before going to sleep and have it checked regularly by a qualified electrician.
  • Keep furniture, clothes and curtains at least 1m away from heaters.

Smoking and naked flames:

  • Don't smoke in bed.
  • Use a solid ashtray to stub out cigarette butts.
  • Soak cigarette butts in water before putting them in the rubbish.
  • Check behind cushions for cigarette butts and ashes before going to bed.
  • Where possible, smoke outside.
  • Don't leave burning candles unattended.

Smoke alarms

Your home has smoke alarms and you're responsible for making sure they work.

Dust your smoke alarm every 6 months so that they continue to work properly.

Test your smoke alarm every month by pushing the test button. It should beep. Let us know immediately if your smoke alarm is not working.

We will change the battery when necessary. You can log this as a maintenance job by phoning 04 499 4444.

Escape plan

Set up an escape plan that suits your home and family. Make sure to include how you will take care of young children and elderly. Talk about your plan with everyone in the house and practise it every 6 months. Remember:

  • Everyone should know two ways out of every room (although this may not be possible in some homes).
  • Make sure doors and windows are clear of clutter and easy to open.
  • Go to the agreed outside meeting place for your complex.