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Fire Damage in Schools
By the RestorationSOS Educational Staff
Fires occurring in schools are among the more disturbing images that flash across our evening news. With the lives and well-being of our children at stake, we all want to know that the schools they are attending are fireproof, and that the teachers and staff responsible for them know what to do in the event of any unforeseen emergency.
Fires in schools may start for any number of reasons, but the most common are fires that begin in the cafeteria or kitchen or fires that begin as the result of scientific experiments involving combustible materials. Most schools are equipped with sprinkler systems, as well as fire extinguishers, but it becomes important for each school to have a proper fire plan in place and the ability to execute it effectively.
Each school should have a periodic risk assessment performed and ready for inspection by local authorities. The results of this assessment should be discussed with all teachers and staff.
Preventative Steps to Take
We all remember the fire drill as a means of getting out of class for a few minutes. Fire drills and evacuations should be established and conducted on a regular basis. Fire alarms and smoke detectors should be present on the school property and kept in good working condition. Have someone in charge of performing regular maintenance on these items.
All exits must be clearly marked and free of obstruction. More than one fire-related death has been caused by the person's inability to find or get through a fire exit. Keeping the school clean and organized will go a long way towards keeping all areas safe.
Have as many staff members as possible trained on the use of fire extinguishers and other equipment. In the event of an unexpected blaze, they may be all that stands between the evacuating students and the fire until the local fire department arrives.
Fire safety signs must be present in all areas of the building. If a given area is not located close to a fire exit, signs should be posted pointing the way to the nearest one.
Evacuation routes should include the location of the nearest available exit to the chosen starting point, as well as an assembly place outside where students can be assembled and heads properly counted. Every step should be taken to encourage an orderly, single file evacuation, with no running or panicking.
Local fire damage restoration professionals are available to assist any school system with the cleanup, repair, and restoration following a fire damage event. Available 24/7 and offering same-day emergency service, they offer a complete range of services designed to clean up the mess, repair the damage, and get the facility back to its pre-loss condition as soon as possible.
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