I was watching a wave of nasty storms race across the Florida coastline past my office this afternoon. The storms tossed debris like dust, ripped siding off a nearby building and lifted up loose shingles off the roof allowing the driving rain to enter. My first thought was for my children who I knew would be getting on the school bus home soon. I truly hoped that the school had done its preventive maintenance and secured the playground equipment as well as anything else that could fly.
I started thinking (yes there was smoke coming from my ears) what type of school equipment can cause harm if not securely fastened. I also wondered how often these items should be checked to ensure reasonable safety.
“To protect against wind damage without making any structural changes to a building, you can:
- Identify and remove trees and branches that could fall on the building walls or roof, or on power lines.
- Identify and repair loose or damaged building components such as siding, soffit and fascia, shingles and roofing, brickwork, and brick chimneys.”
Source: FEMA Training Material
School Inspection Checklist
Here is the list I came up with of the top of my head keeping in mind Florida gets many severe wind and lightning storms.
|Item||How often item should be inspected/checked|
|Debris (tree, trash, garbage)||Daily|
|Playground equipment||Weekly or before every storm if there is warning|
|Roofs||After every significant storm or quarterly|
|Doors (ability to completely close)||Monthly|
|Windows (ability to open and close)||Monthly|
|Trees||Dead and hanging branches trimmed – monthly|
|School caution signs||Before every storm if there is warning|
|Fire extinguishers||Quarterly or as mandated by State and Local Law|
|Bicycles||Before every storm|
|Storm drains||Monthly and after storms.|
|Railings and Stairwells||Monthly|
|Emergency Broadcast system||Daily|
|Standing Water||During/after storm|
|School Bus Tires||Monthly|
I am sure if I gave it more thought the list would expand. Today, I am hoping school officials thought of these things and have a regularly scheduled inspection and preventive maintenance program in place. What items would add to the list?
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