Wisconsin Department of Commerce Newsletter
End of the School Year Is the Perfect Time to Review Rules
It won't be long until the last school bell of the year rings and students head off for the summer, so it's a good time to take a look at improving fire prevention in schools. Changes to the Fire Prevention Code in December 2001 were aimed at reducing potential fire hazards. However, in these tight budget times, how can we work together to achieve these goals without jeopardizing the primary goals of education?
Fire departments and schools need to come together and proactively develop solutions that work. We'll touch on some of these issues in this article, but each situation is unique. Please be aware that local municipal ordinances may add further requirements. And keep in mind that any changes in the design and construction of a building to meet the safety requirements must be made in consultation with both the building and fire inspectors.
Coats In Corridors?
At the same time, we need to consider the fire and egress hazards posed by coats in corridors. Such items are not prohibited by the code, but there are specific mitigating factors that need to be in place to allow coats in the corridors of a school. There are three exceptions in the code:
(1) Corridors that are protected by automatic sprinkler systems.
School administrators may want to look at all three options to see what is most cost effective for their situation.
Although these are the official Wisconsin fire code references, municipalities are allowed to adopt stricter ordinances than the code, including those contained in the International Fire Code (IFC). Some schools may have additional requirements based on local ordinances.
Artwork And Other Flammable Materials
Displayed On Walls Of Schools?
Fire drill (emergency egress and relocation) forms are provided by Commerce directly to each school in the late summer for the following school year.
Addendum for the Dispatcher Only
-- Cathy Cliff
The newsletter is issued electronically every other month.
Please send comments or questions to Barbro McGinn, editor.