Fire alarm

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This page documents a hazardous activity.
You are reminded of the CUADC Wiki's general disclaimer.

Different buildings or venues in Cambridge will have different fire alarm systems and different evacuation procedures. Make sure you read the relevant section(s) and remember that this is a wiki and does not replace training by a competent individual.

ADC Theatre

The main fire alarm panel is in the Clubroom and has key switches to easily isolate the smoke detectors on stage and in the Larkum, should you wish to use haze during your performance. There are fire alarm repeater panels in the Foyer, Management Office, Bar Kitchen, Lower Bar Store and in the PS Wing. There is also a fire alarm annunciator light on the SM Desk.

Nobody should touch the fire alarm panel without having received training from ADC Management. When a performance is in progress or there are audience in the building, nobody should touch the fire alarm panel without the Duty Manager's explicit permission, save for isolating and de-isolating using the key switches.

Stages of activation

Stage Nickname Indication Time Cause Action
1 Pre-Alarm Constant beeping from main fire panel and repeater panels. Can continue indefinitely. Small amount of haze/smoke OR a fault in the system. Find source of problem and investigate. Reduce haze/smoke levels.
2 Pre-Alert Intermittent sirens backstage. Strobes on stage and in control boxes. 2 minutes before triggering Full Alert. Some smoke/haze. If no management present then EVACUATE. Otherwise find source of problem: if fire then hit a 'break glass'; if no fire then isolate area and keep under supervision.
3 Full Alert Continuous sirens backstage. Strobes on stage and in control boxes. Fire doors close and codelocks go into bypass. Stage louvres open automatically. Management notified. University Security alerted. Fire Service are probably on their way. Continuous excessive smoke/haze OR heat sensor triggered OR 'break glass' activated. EVACUATE. Do not attempt to reset the alarm. Assemble on the opposite side of Park Street and conduct a 'roll call'.

Who does what?

  • During office hours when there is no performance in progress, Theatre Management will be in charge of running evacuations.
  • During a tech or dress rehearsal the Stage Manager is responsible for the evacuation of the stage and dressing rooms and Management for the rest of the building.
  • During a performance, the Duty Manager is responsible for evacuating Front of House areas whilst the SM evacuates stage/backstage/dressing rooms.
  • Outside of the normal hours, the key holder is in charge of evacuating all areas of the theatre.


  1. If at any point you see flames, hit a 'break-glass' as this immediately triggers a full evacuation.
  2. You should vacate the fly towers if at any point you hear intermittent sirens or see strobes.
  3. Full Alert is sometimes referred to as an RTOPS - Red Trucks on Park Street. This is because University Security will call the fire brigade.
  4. 'Break glass' fire alarm stations are sometimes referred to as MCP's - Manual Call Points.