Fire Alarm at Hotel Property. At 5:45 In the Morning. Short Videos Included.

This experience was not a fire drill.

Fire alarms at hotel properties are never fun — but being startled out of sleep by a fire alarm at a hotel property at 5:45 in the morning is not exactly a great way to start the day.

Fire Alarm at Hotel Property. At 5:45 In the Morning. Short Videos Included.

The incident occurred at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Cairns hotel property in Queensland in Australia. Once I awakened to both the annoyingly loud alarm and flashing strobe light, I quickly got into some semblance of being dressed and took my smartphone with me. I left my camera equipment, laptop computer, and other items that were personal and valuable to me because quick egress in the case of an actual fire emergency is of paramount importance. The door did not feel hot and I did not smell any smoke; so leaving my room seemed to be safe.

Watch the short videos and see and hear what I had experienced. Please accept my apologies for using portrait mode for the first video

…and landscape mode for the second video

…as video orientation was not exactly my top priority at that moment.

The interior of the hotel property is actually outside. The stairs were slippery because rain had fallen; and elevators should never be used during a fire emergency.

Other guests were either half dazed, annoyed, tired, confused, or a combination thereof.

After the hotel property was cleared to be safe to return, I found myself in an elevator packed with fellow guests but no one was saying anything. After a moment, I turned around with a huge smile on my face and exclaimed, “Well, that was fun!” That broke the awkward silence of humans who were still only half awake…

…and because by the time this incident had concluded, everyone was hungry and headed to breakfast. Usually, breakfast at that hour of the day has fewer people and is more quiet.

Final Boarding Call

A fire emergency can happen at any time of the day or night — so a fire alarm that works at a hotel property is welcome despite its significant inconvenience. Regardless, the question remains: should fire safety tests be announced in advance by hotel properties?

I had gone through a stretch of hotel stays years ago at which the fire alarm was activated. This incident brought back unpleasant memories. No matter what time of the day it occurs, it is inconvenient…

…but this incident was a false alarm and not a fire drill. What activated the fire alarm was never publicly revealed. Regardless, a fire alarm at a hotel property at 5:45 in the morning can be more jolting than a cup of strong coffee.

Finally, please read this article pertaining to protecting yourself in case of fire at a hotel, motel, or resort property. Doing so could literally save your life.

Photograph and videos ©2024 by Brian Cohen.

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