Have you ever wondered what would happen if a fire starts in your child’s school? Does your school have a safety plan or strategy on how to respond to a fire threat? Well with this in mind the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) San Pedro along with the Ministry of Education held a fire simulation at the Holy Cross Anglican School on Wednesday, October 17, 2012.
The Holy Cross Anglican School located in the San Mateo Area was chosen for the fire simulation because of the school’s proximity and location to other vulnerable areas. The School Principal was advised to involve all staff members in the planning of the school safety plan and seek advice and assistance if needed from the relevant agencies involved in public safety.
With over 500 students, school principal and staff made sure that students evacuated the school grounds in an orderly and safe manner. The fire drill commenced at 10:00 a.m. and concluded at 10:53 a.m. According to information received from NEMO San Pedro the school did quite well being the first time a drill is conducted., although there is lots of room for improvement.
Concerns/areas that need to improve
2. Roles and responsibility need to be clearly stated and assigned in school safety plan
3. The staging area for students clearly needs to be defined in plan
4. Keys for exit need to be in a more accessible area.
5. More stringent accountability of all students
6. Exiting or escape routes needs to be defined and marked
An incident occurring is just a matter of time. Communication to all key players in public safety is a must in a timely manner in order to save life and property. NEMO officials hope that the teachers and all other staff members take all emergency drills seriously.