HEARD LOUD AND CLEAR

Students voice their opinions on the current school fire alarms

Ethan Cartier

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Ethan Cartier

Students at PHS are fed up with the noise of school-provided fire alarms.

In 1890, an inventor by the name of Francis Robbins Upton, an associate of Thomas Edison, patented the first automatic electric fire alarm. Since then, fire alarms have been implemented in many homes, businesses, and municipal buildings such as schools.

Some fire alarms, like the ones you may see at Powell Middle School, have students wait to go outside while teachers scan hallways to clear any fire hazards, and determine the point of a fire or for delinquents. Other types of fire alarms can range in volume, the brightness of lights, or recorded message. 

Here at Powell Highschool, it seems like the message of the fire alarms is being heard loud and clear, with many students complaining about their noisy and sometimes overwhelming volume.

“Can we have the one [fire alarm] in the back of the library not be so loud?” sophomore Shawn Evelo said. “It decimates your ears. I’m pretty sure these fire alarms were built for hangers.”

Can we have the one [fire alarm] in the back of the library not be so loud? It decimates your ears. I’m pretty sure these fire alarms were built for hangers.”

— Shawn Evelo

With this much outcry among students for a new and more quiet alarm, it is stumping to many underclassmen as to why the fire alarms have not changed in the fifteen years since the construction of the current PHS building.

“They’re very loud and annoying,” sophomore Kenan Lind said. “I can understand that they [need to be] loud, but it seems too loud.”

Every school year, federal law requires safety inspections of school alarms and other emergency equipment to provide a safe environment during the year.

“Based on that information [from inspections] we don’t need to replace the alarms,” Principal Timothy Wormald said. “They’re fulfilling the need of alerting students and staff of a potential fire.”

Even with the conflict among students and the school-provided fire alarms, it seems like nothing will change for the foreseeable future. When Powell High School inevitably moves to a new location, there may be hope for a better, quieter, and more appeasing alarm system.