FIRE ! Emergency !

Is this the way out?

So, what is wanted in an emergency.. AN ESCAPE ROUTE is a good choice.   So when the firm alarm went off at the motel in Toronto and I was heading to the lobby and found the fire doors closed,  this sign looked promising, don’t you think?

Well, I and 3 adults and 3 children ( 1 a newborn) all thought so and so we headed down the stairs.  It would probably help you at this time to know that the motel was above an Asian market.. so it (the Super8 Motel) started on the 4th floor of the building.   That is also the floor my story starts at… so down we went.  we went down 3, 2, 1 and oops, kept going..   We found ourselves about 1/2 floor below street level.   Entrance to the market on the right.. oops locked.  Up some stairs to the street on the left ..oops locked.  And two more doors.. to offices or something, you guess it , also LOCKED.  A trapped feeling ensued.

I went to the street side and called 911.. i could see the firetruck had already arrived up the street but I could not get their attention, so I WAS happy I went back for my phone  ( ah, yes, that is how I got seperated from my room mate).     Anyway I got pretty quickly to someone who could help and then I turned around and my compadres were quickly running for the door BACK UP.. I mean TOWARDS the  fire with small kids.. I shouted out to them and the door kicked closed behind them and now it was, you guessed it .. LOCKED.

WOW.. I was REALLY alone and TRAPPED..  Have I mentioned yet that I was in my pajamas?  Kind of adds to that silly situation feeling.   It took some explaining but after about 15 minutes I was rescued.  After about 10 minutes my phone contact was able to explain to the firemen where I was.. they came in a group of about 6 carrying axes and other frightening implements.. the glass door to the street was REALLY thick and we couldn’t hear each other even when shouting.  So my phone contact got their cheif to get mall security to let me out the other side.  He showed up and YELLED at me.. said I shouldn’t be there…. hmm.. reference the picture.

I walked through the mall and out the other side to find my friends who were happy to see me.. I had not realized they were calling me since I had been quite busy on the phone.  The family and children were OK too.. but ONLY because the fire was just smoke coming out of one of the room air conditioners and had been taken care of.. otherwise .. well, I don’t want to think about those tiny lungs and the nasty smoke, not a good combination.

I showed the firemen the door and they assured me that this motel was going to get LOTS of citations.. I just hope they follow up.  Neither the desk clerks or the mall security seemed to understand that Emergency EXITS need to EXIT.  They were much more concerned with the possibility of thieves coming IN.  I think they just put up this sign to be compliant to number of exits.   Other problems were that the desk clerks were untrained and fire doors that didn’t close properly .  I just hope they follow up.

It was our last night in Toronto anyway.. we were out of there at 6 am the next morning and back in Victoria by 4:00 pm local time.