Lewisporte Academy evac­u­ated last Thurs­day af­ter smoke de­tected

RCMP im­pressed with quick re­sponse to move stu­dents to a safe lo­ca­tion

The Pilot - - News - BY KAREN WELLS kwells@pi­lotnl.ca

Stu­dents and staff at Lewisporte Academy put their fire drill train­ing to use in a real life sit­u­a­tion last Thurs­day af­ter­noon.

Lewisporte RCMP Sgt. Ray­mond Jul­lien told The Pi­lot that po­lice and Lewisporte Fire Res­cue did re­spond to an in­ci­dent at the school on Nov. 9 of smoke in the build­ing. When they ar­rived on scene within min­utes of re­ceiv­ing the call, Jul­lien noted that the stu­dents had al­ready been evac­u­ated from the build­ing and were safe inside the Sal­va­tion Army Church lo­cated be­hind the school. The process of hav­ing every­one va­cate the build­ing took about two min­utes.

“They did a re­ally good job,” he said. “Every­one was out and ac­counted for by the time we got there.

“The kids were out as soon as the smoke started. All those dry runs (of fire drills) proved yes­ter­day that it works.”

There were no is­sues of smoke in­hala­tion or in­juries to stu­dents or staff.

Jul­lien said it was de­ter­mined there was no fire, and that the source of the smoke had orig­i­nated in the elec­tri­cal room.

Due to the fact that they couldn’t re-en­ter the build­ing, the stu­dents stayed at the church un­til the buses or par­ents ar­rived to take them home. Jul­lien noted some par­ents were con­cerned that they were not con­tacted and that the stu­dents didn’t have their jack­ets with them, but the smoke in the build­ing meant that staff could not re-en­ter to call par­ents or to re­trieve per­sonal items. Jul­lien said he un­der­stands the con­cerns of par­ents, but he said the safety of the chil­dren came first and he was im­pressed with how the school han­dled the sit­u­a­tion.

There were no classes at Lewisporte Academy today due to a sched­uled hol­i­day. Jul­lien noted that the New­found­land and Labrador English School District will be look­ing into the in­ci­dent. The NLESD was con­tacted for an up­date and the Pi­lot will pro­vide de­tails as they be­come avail­able.

Lewisporte Academy in­cludes stu­dents from kinder­garten to Grade 6.

PHOTO FROM NEW­FOUND­LAND AND LABRADOR ENGLISH SCHOOL DISTRICT WEB­SITE

Stu­dents and staff evac­u­ated Lewisporte Academy on Thurs­day af­ter­noon af­ter smoke was de­tected in the school.

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