Fire alarms installed at Verbena

Published 5:29 pm Thursday, January 6, 2011

Fire alarms have been installed at Verbena High School, bringing the Chilton County School System into compliance with Alabama fire code.
The project of installing the alarms at Verbena was about a year-and-a-half process, VHS principal Tommy Headley said, which was completed over the Christmas holidays.
“I feel more comfortable with the fire alarm system in place,” Headley said.
The Verbena principal said a central control panel was installed in the school’s office area, and other controls were placed in different buildings of the school.
Alarm switches are located on each hall of the school, and an activation sets off an audible alarm and strobe lights.
“If somebody pulled one, everybody on campus would know it,” Headley said.
But the system is designed so that students wouldn’t mistakenly pull a lever—or set off the alarm without there being an actual emergency.
“It has some safeguards where a student can’t just set it off as a prank,” Headley said.
The project was a result of an inspection of the county’s schools in 2008 by the state Fire Marshal’s office.
The county was ordered to immediately begin installing alarm systems at Thorsby and Verbena and provide a fire inspector to walk the halls at both schools throughout each school day.
“The board, at that point, really didn’t have a choice,” Headley said. “We were mandated.”
Thorsby’s fire alarm system was installed in 2010.