House Bill No. 183

Introduced By masolo, denny, bookout-reinicke, rose, ahner, kitzenberg, heavy runner, hagener, marshall

A Bill for an Act entitled: An Act generally revising the laws relating to school fire drills; changing "fire drills" to "disaster drills"; requiring school districts to identify local hazards and to design appropriate drills; eliminating the requirement that school districts in certain seismic zones establish earthquake emergency plans; amending sections 20-1-401, 20-1-402, 20-1-404, and 20-1-407, MCA; and repealing sections 20-1-403, 20-1-406, and 20-7-1101, MCA.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Montana:

Section 1.  Section 20-1-401, MCA, is amended to read:

"20-1-401.   Fire Disaster drills to be conducted regularly -- districts to identify disaster risks. (1) As used in this part, "disaster" has the same meaning as in 10-3-103. Fire exit Disaster drills shall must be conducted regularly in accordance with the applicable provisions of the following sections this part.

(2) A board of trustees shall identify the local hazards that exist within the boundaries of its school district and design drills to address those hazards."

Section 2.  Section 20-1-402, MCA, is amended to read:

"20-1-402.   Number of fire disaster drills required -- avoiding severe cold weather time of drills to vary. There shall must be at least eight fire exit disaster drills a year in schools a school. At least four of the drills must be fire exit drills. In climates where the weather is severe during the winter months, weekly drills should be held at the beginning of the school term to complete the required number of drills before cold weather so as not to endanger the health of the pupils. Drills must be held at different hours of the day or evening to avoid distinction between drills and actual disasters."

Section 3.  Section 20-1-404, MCA, is amended to read:

"20-1-404.   Drill to sound on fire disaster alarm evacuation system -- recall signal to be distinct -- control of signal. All fire exit (1) If a disaster drill is signaled, the alarms shall signal must be sounded on the fire disaster alarm system and not on the signal system used to dismiss classes.

(2) The recall signal must be separate and distinct from any other signal. The recall signal may be given by distinctive colored flags or banners. If the recall signal is electrical, the push buttons or other controls must be kept under lock and the key kept in the possession of the principal or some other designated person in order to prevent a recall at a time when there is a disaster. Regardless of the method of recall, the means of giving the signal must be kept under lock."

Section 4.  Section 20-1-407, MCA, is amended to read:

"20-1-407.   Inspection of exits -- cooperation with fire department local authorities having jurisdiction in drills. It shall be is the duty of the school authorities to inspect all exit facilities periodically, in order to make sure that all stairways, doors, and other exits are in proper condition, and. School authorities shall cooperate with the local fire department authorities authorities having jurisdiction in conducting fire disaster drills."

Section 5.  Repealer. Sections 20-1-403, 20-1-406, and 20-7-1101, MCA, are repealed.