In case of emergency: What drills look like in schools during the pandemic

Published: Sep. 24, 2020 at 7:46 AM MDT
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - Emergency drills in schools look a little different now during the pandemic.

The Colorado Springs Fire Department told 11 News that local schools usually conduct emergency drills every month. Now with the pandemic, they have to do multiple drills with all different cohorts of students to keep them separated.

“If all the students are back in one session, then we just do it all at once. If they’re doing two cohorts to where they’re all alternating, one group is there a couple days a week, then another group is there alternating days ... then they’ll have to do two fire drills a month to be able to cover all the students," said Kris Cooper, deputy fire marshal of CSFD.

The biggest change to emergency drills in schools is that they have to stay separated outside during the drill, rather than grouping all together. They also will go back inside after the drill one-by-one for each classroom.

The fire department says they train for all kinds of threats in schools, like school violence or fires. COVID-19 is now another “threat” firefighters train for.

“It’s important because the students need to know how to safely get out of the building should there be an emergency. And we cannot rely on the students knowing all the ways out of the school," said Cooper.

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