Hadley School to be Reinspected This Week For Fire Safety

The school business manager said last week that the majority of items mentioned in the Aug. 29, fire safety inspection have been corrected.


Deputy Fire Chief James Potts and Town Building Inspector Richard Baldacci inspected Hadley School for fire safety late last month, finding items including paper decorations that needed to be corrected.

School Business Manager Ed Cronin said at last week's School Committe meeting that the majority of the items on the inspection list had been corrected.

The deputy chief said in an interview on Friday that he will reinspect the school this week, following up on the Aug. 29 inspection.

Some teachers were over zealous using paper to decorate their rooms, he said.

He has seen improvement in fire safety at Hadley over the last year.

The school had more issues last year, he said.

"They've worked really hard over there," he said.

The Hadley inspection is part of the department's annual review of all school buildings. The department will inspect the district's other schools, as well.

Here are all the items mentioned in the department's memo on the Aug. 29 inspection:

The following violations found throughout the building.  Many of these issues are widespread and must be corrected.


  • Ceiling Tiles throughout the building were out of place, missing or damaged.  These must be replaced.
  • Paper, and string hung from overhead light fixtures and or ceiling.  Paper hung on doors.
  • String, fishing line or similar materials hung on walls, over windows or doors. 
  • Fire Evacuation plans are missing in some rooms and in others they were hung over the door and out of the line of sight.
  • Exposed cables and wires throughout the building these appeared to pose a trip or entanglement hazard. 
    • Computer network cables should be enclosed or bundled to eliminate the hazard especially in the computer lab.
  • Non-fire rated curtains over closets and windows. 
  • Materials must have a fire rating to be used.   Documentation which verifies fire rating should be on fire in the school and at the fire department.
  • Electrical Panels through out the building are missing cover screws or doors will not close or latch.
  • Exposed electrical wiring or junction boxes.
  • Emergency exit doors do not open easily.  In the case of the Art room it would not open at all.
  • Hallway doors were found propped in the open position.
  • Fire extinguishers are about to expire.

Specific issues were identified in the following locations:

  • Basement Level
    • Exposed wiring over archway to girls bathroom
    • Electrical panel missing cover screws
    • Combustible trash and leaves built up in stairwell outside cafeteria exit
    • Combustible storage in electrical room
  • Art Room
    • Emergency lighting over door not working
    • Emergency door will not open
  • Gymnasium
    • Insulation peeling off heating pipes next to the cut through door
    • Back stage- holes must be sealed, access panels must be covered
    • Exposed cables/ wires must be covered
  • Mrs. B’s room
    • Combustible materials hanging from the ceiling and materials over the door.
    • Clothes line strung over windows exceed maximum allowable materials allowed to be displayed by law.
    • Light fixtures falling out of ceiling
    • Exposed lathes ( holes in plaster) in storages closet
  • Mrs. Bucklin
    • Extension chord strung over drop ceiling.
  • 3rd Floor Left / rear
    • String over windows
  • 3rd Floor Top/front (right)
    • String over windows
    • Clips for hanging materials from the ceiling
  • Computer Room
    • Extinguisher must be inspected and tagged
    • Computer Cables through out the room pose entanglement and tripping hazards
  • Room 306
    • Holes in the walls and exposed wooden lathes
  • Mrs. Sanchez
    • Room exceeds allowable combustible materials that may be hung.
    • Non fire rated curtains need to be replaced with rated shades.
    • String outside in hallway ( A better solution is needed to display student work)
  • Music Room
    • Exposed wires and unsecured electrical panel door.
  • Mrs. Clains
    • Displayed combustible materials well over regulation.
    • Combustible curtains over windows and closets.
    • String over windows
A+ Schools September 17, 2012 at 10:19 AM
Hadley has great teachers and staff (I have two kids their now and one more beginning next year). But the building is old and tired. It needs to be replaced with a new school that our children deserve. That's why we and many others live in Swampscott. After attending the school meeting last week, it appears a good plan is in place to replace Hadley School with a new building that will meet the needs of the kids. Terry, I have a couple questions: 1. If I understand the article, the schools are inspected yearly. I am concerned all of the above issues occurred in only one year. When specifically was the Hadley School last inspected? 2. Who conducted the inspection for the Fire Department? 3. What, if any where the findings? 4. Is Chief Potts any relation to the George Potts from the Planning Board that has written negatively about the school department? There appears to be more here. Either the school department ignored multiple violations last year, or let them occur all over again. Or, the Fire Department's inspection last year was lacking. Or, Chief Potts is being overzealous, Yes, some of these violations appear concerning (from my perspective as a parent), but some appear very questionable and petty: 1. "finding items including paper decorations that needed to be corrected" 2. "string outside in hallway ( A better solution is needed to display student work)" 3. "string over windows" Thanks Terry.
Terry Date September 17, 2012 at 12:27 PM
I will forward the four questions to Deputy Chief Potts.
Safety2go September 18, 2012 at 11:40 AM
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Terry Date September 18, 2012 at 05:45 PM
Thank you.


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