Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Safe Room

The students have started using the new safe room addition at the elementary school.  During the day, students use the safe room as a cafeteria or a place for small group instruction or assemblies.  In the case of a tornado or significant weather related issues, that space will be used as a tornado safe room.  The safe room itself is built strong enough to withstand an F5 tornado with 250 MPH winds.  The walls are 12 inches thick with concrete.  The roof is even made of concrete, 320,000 pounds to be exact!  There are windows in the safe room, but there are hinged doors that easily swing shut and automatically latch into a locked position, which will withstand a tornado.  Inside the safe room, there is an emergency back up generator that will keep the electricity operating for up to 24 hours, in case of an emergency.  The safe room was funded by a FEMA grant and the state's 1 Cent Sales Tax.  Today our students practiced their first tornado drill of the school year and it took us roughy 3 minutes to get all of the elementary in the room and seated.  This was great, considering it was our first practice run.  We noticed a few things that could be changed so we can make it even quicker next time.  The students did a great job with our first drill, I was very impressed how smoothly it ran today!  As the principal and a parent, I am thankful that our superintendent and school board took on this construction project to do something proactive for the safety of our students.  If you happen to see a school board member, be sure to tell them "thank you"!  

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