Stop, Drop and Don't Move During The Fire Alarm?

Eric Guinn, Staff Writer

Photo Courtesy of Unsplash.com

Photo Courtesy of Unsplash.com

On the campus of North Greenville University, the growing trend of not vacating dorms during fire drills has become concerning. With students either sleeping or just straight up not wanting to leave their dorm rooms at all. What does NGU do about students like these? What are the policies that are enforced? Who is responsible for students who don’t vacate?

Once a semester, without warning to RAs or students, a fire alarm is set off in efforts to make sure the of preparedness of the dorm if ever a real fire were to be set ablaze. Before the drill even starts, North Greenville has to call the fire department to let them know that we are having a drill. At this point, RAs are instructed to get everyone under their jurisdiction out of their dorms and outside the building.

If there is a real fire, once everyone is outside, two things will happen. First, one of the school’s maintenance staff members will shut off the fire alarm. Secondly, a Resident Assistant or student will call the fire department.

Pretty simple, right? Not all the time. Sometimes you have those few “I don’t feel like it” students who insist on being difficult. Dillon Key, Head of Housing and Residential “Key” Master, stated that “about 85% of the [time] it’s a drill/false alarm. With this stat in mind, students hear a fire drill and think to themselves, ‘Oh, this is just a drill. Nothing serious.’”

Most of the times when a student refuses, the RA will try to handle the situation themselves through reasoning with the student. If the situation becomes major, Atari Jarrett, Head of Student Conduct, will address it. This includes reasoning with the student or even further in-depth punishments.

Though North Greenville University does tout their health and safety policies, the rules surrounding participating in fire alarm drills are not as strict because, for one, they only happen once a semester and two, its really not worth kicking someone out of school because they didn’t want to participate in a fire drill.