TUESDAY FEBRUARY 02, 2021: PORT OF SPAIN, TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO- Officers from the Trinidad and Tobago Fire Prevention Unit visited Lady Hochoy School, Arima and National Centre for Persons with Disabilities (NCPD), San Fernando to review compliance with inspection reports submitted to the Foundation in 2019. The exercise is part of the Digicel Foundation’s ‘Preparing You’ programme and is meant to strengthen the schools’ disaster response in the event of an emergency
Fire safety in schools is vital. With large numbers of young people gathered in one place, the potential for catastrophe is high. Under the Fire Services Act, schools must conduct risk assessments to identify the general fire precautions needed. This regulation requires that fire precautions be put in place ‘where necessary’ and to the extent it is reasonable and practicable to do so.
Officers from the Fire Prevention Administration commended Principal of Lady Hochoy School, Arima – Sharon Lewis for efforts made towards achieving compliance with recommendations made. The officers reiterated how vital it is for every school to take necessary precautions to protect its pupils, staff and visitors in the event of a fire.
Over at NCPD, the school’s HSE Officer –Mr. Basdeo and HR Officer- Ms. Branker, were on hand to accompany the officers through the inspection at its New Street location in San Fernando. The officers noted the efficiency of the HSE Officer in ensuring compliance with fire safety codes and reminded that in order to remain effective, fire risk assessments must be completed at least once a year.
‘Preparing You’ was designed to build resilience of facilities that cater to persons with disabilities. The intervention provides support to teachers and students through training and installation of safety equipment. ‘Preparing You’ is co-funded by the Inter-American Development Bank and the Digicel Foundation.