Written by Alexus Smith
Confusion struck Pleasure Ridge Park High School as fire alarms went off on the second day of school. Students stood outside for 15 minutes, but not for a fire. The unplanned drill was due to non-working exhaust fans and all ovens running in the kitchen.
Alarms sounded because of heat but still gave students and staff good practice. Throughout the school year, schools are scheduled to have 12 fire drills. There are six for each semester but two have to be in the first 20 days.
“Though I wasn’t incredibly pleased about the drill happening during lunch, we had a great evacuation,” Assistant Principal Mr. Jennings said.
There were announcements made to notify everyone to leave the building. Even with the delay, students and staff evacuated the school in less than five minutes. According to Mr. Jennings, this was one of the fastest in 17 years here at PRP.
“Not everyone took the drill seriously, some people turned around just to get their belongings. Overall I felt like the evacuation was fast,” said Junior Ebony Brackins.
The drills are meant to help prepare the school in case of an actual emergency, but the timing threw off some staff and students because it happened during lunch. It was seen by many as a false alarm, especially since it was so early in the school year.
“I appreciate how PRP acted during the first unplanned drill,” Mr. Jennings said.
The fire drill was the first of three unexpected interruptions to the school day. During the second week of school, students in the Tech Building were evacuated to the gym due to a small gas leak on the outside of the building. And on Monday, August 29, a transformer blew out and the school was without power for about an hour.