For the past few years NEMO has been implementing disaster scenarios at schools in our community. They have now taken it to a higher level. Yesterday, we had a surprise fire drill and all entities that would be contacted for the real deal were called in a specific order and dispatched to TIA/Casa Verde.

The teachers and students did an excellent job in a situation we had never practiced: they were at recess. Not only does Miss Wilema contact the Fire Department etc. but each building has a leader and a runner. These teachers are responsible for their list of students and their contact numbers, turning on the alarm in their buildings and checking that ALL students are out of the buildings and then they take a roll call. NEMO asked that a child be removed from the group to see if we would indeed know that child was not with us. We knew immediately.

After the drill, Miss Wilema and I had a meeting with the Fire Chief, NEMO rep, BEL reps, policemen and Traffic Department. They did ask us to convey that if there were really a fire parents should not rush to the campus. We will be either at the end of fence on the beach in front of Casa Verde and south of Ramon's or if the fire were to start on the beachside of the school we will file out to the north gate and possibly cross to Bowen and Bowen depot if need be. At that time you would be able to find us and your child if necessary. The fire chief also asked that we let parents know that if they hear the emergency siren or see the fire engine while driving; it is procedure that one must stop and pull over to give street access to the fire engine.

Let's hope we never have to deal with this situation but we felt it important for all of you to know the plan and that the Fire Chief stressed that parents go to the staging area not the school.

Thank you for your cooperation in this matter,
Lady Bowen