State Codes and Statutes

State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > North-carolina > Chapter_115C > GS_115C-525

§ 115C‑525.  Fireprevention.

(a)        Duty of PrincipalRegarding Fire Hazards. – The principal of every public school in the Stateshall have the following duties regarding fire hazards during periods when heis in control of a school:

(1)        Every principal shallmake certain that all corridors, halls, and tower stairways which are used forexits shall always be kept clear and that nothing shall be permitted to bestored or kept in corridors or halls, or in, on or under stairways that couldin any way interfere with the orderly exodus of occupants. The principal shallmake certain that all doors used for exits shall be kept in good workingcondition. During the occupancy of the building or any portion thereof by thepublic or for school purposes, the principal shall make certain that all doorsnecessary for prompt and orderly exodus of the occupants are kept unlocked.

(2)        Every principalshall make certain that no electrical wiring shall be installed within anyschool building or structure or upon the premises and that no alteration oraddition shall be made in any existing wiring, except with the authorization ofthe superintendent. Any such work shall be performed by a licensed electricalcontractor, or by a maintenance electrician regularly employed by the board ofeducation and approved by the Commissioner of Insurance.

(3)        Every principalshall make certain that combustible materials necessary to the curriculum andfor the operation of the school shall be stored in a safe and orderly manner.

(4)        Every principalshall make certain that all supplies, such as oily rags, mops, etc., which maycause spontaneous combustion, shall be stored in an orderly manner in a well‑ventilatedplace.

(5)        Every principalshall make certain that all trash and rubbish shall be removed from the schoolbuilding daily. No trash or rubbish shall be permitted to accumulate in aschool attic, basement or other place on the premises.

(6)        Every principalshall cooperate in every way with the authorized building inspector, electricalinspector, county fire marshal or other designated person making theinspections required by G.S. 115C‑525(b).

It shall further be the dutyof the principal to bring to the attention of the local superintendent ofschools the failure of the building inspector, electrical inspector, countyfire marshal, or other person to make the inspections required by G.S. 115C‑525(b).It shall further be the duty of the principal to call to the attention of thesuperintendent of schools all recommendations growing out of the inspections,in order that the proper authorities can take steps to bring about thenecessary corrections.

(b)        Inspection ofSchools for Fire Hazards; Removal of Hazards. – Every public school building inthe State shall be inspected a minimum of two times during the year inaccordance with the following plan: Provided, that the periodic inspectionsherein required shall be at least 120 days apart:

(1)        Each school buildingshall be inspected to make certain that none of the fire hazards enumerated inG.S. 115C‑525(a)(1) through (5) exist, and to ensure that the buildingand all heating, mechanical, electrical, gas, and other equipment andappliances are properly installed and maintained in a safe and serviceablemanner as prescribed by the North Carolina Building Code. Following eachinspection, the persons making the inspection shall furnish to the principal ofthe school a written report of conditions found during inspection, upon formsfurnished by the Commissioner of Insurance, and the persons making the inspectionshall also furnish a copy of the report to the superintendent of schools; thesuperintendent shall keep such copy on file for a period of three years. Inaddition to the periodic inspections herein required, any alterations oradditions to existing school buildings or to school building utilities orappliances shall be inspected immediately following completion.

(2)        The board of countycommissioners of each county shall designate the persons to make theinspections and reports required by subdivision (1) of this subsection. Theboard may designate any city or county building inspector, any city or countyfire prevention bureau, any city or county electrical inspector, the countyfire marshal, or any other qualified persons, but no person shall make anyinspection unless he shall be qualified as required by G.S. 153A‑351.1and Section 7 of Chapter 531 of the 1977 Session Laws. Nothing in this sectionshall be construed as prohibiting two or more counties from designating thesame persons to make the inspections and reports required by subdivision (1) ofthis subsection. The board of county commissioners shall compensate or providefor the compensation of the persons designated to make all such inspections andreports. The board of county commissioners may make appropriations in thegeneral fund of the county to meet the costs of such inspections, or in thealternative the board may add appropriations to the school current expense fundto meet the costs thereof: Provided, that if appropriations are added to theschool current expense fund, such appropriations shall be in addition to andnot in substitution of existing school current expense appropriations.

(3)        It shall be the dutyof the Commissioner of Insurance, the Superintendent of Public Instruction, andthe State Board of Education to prescribe any additional rules and regulationswhich they may deem necessary in connection with such inspections and reportsfor the reduction of fire hazards and protection of life and property in publicschools.

(4)        It shall be the dutyof each principal to make certain that all fire hazards called to his attentionin the course of the inspections and reports required by subdivision (1) ofthis subsection are immediately removed or corrected, if such removal orcorrection can be accomplished by the principal. If such removal or correctioncannot be accomplished by the principal, it shall be the duty of the principalto bring the matter to the attention of the superintendent.

(5)        It shall be the dutyof each superintendent of schools to make certain that all fire hazards calledto his attention in the course of the inspections and reports required bysubdivision (1) of this subsection and not removed or corrected by theprincipals as required by subdivision (4) of this subsection are removed orcorrected, if such removal or correction can be brought about within thecurrent appropriations available to the superintendent. Where any removal orcorrection of a hazard will require the expenditure of funds in excess ofcurrent appropriations, it shall be the duty of the superintendent to bring thematter to the attention of the appropriate board of education, and the board ofeducation in turn shall bring the same to the attention of the board of countycommissioners, in order that immediate steps be taken, within the framework ofexisting law, to remove or correct the hazard.

(c)        Liability forFailure to Perform Duties Imposed by G.S. 115C‑288(d) and 115C‑525(a)or 115C‑525(b). – Any person willfully failing to perform any of the dutiesimposed by G.S. 115C‑288(d), 115C‑525(a) or 115C‑525(b) shallbe guilty of a Class 3 misdemeanor and shall only be fined not more than fivehundred dollars ($500.00) in the discretion of the court.  (1957, c. 844; 1959, c. 573,s. 14; 1981, c. 423, s. 1; 1989, c. 681, s. 12; 1993, c. 539, s. 892; 1994, Ex.Sess., c. 24, s. 14(c); 2009‑570, s. 40.)