According to Charles Cooper of Simplex Grinnell, the fire alarm system in the historic Logan County Courthouse is not up to code and needs some work to at least bring it to the standard it was when installed years ago.
Cooper attended last week’s Fiscal Court meeting to inform magistrates of the alarm issues and ask for approval to begin work that will cost approximately $5,000.
Cooper said his company had located 22 alarms above the drop ceilings at the courthouse - ones no one knew were there until the renovation of the structure was well underway in 2012. Cooper’s company was originally hired to replace an elevator recall panel and install smoke detectors in the elevator and bathrooms.
“These devices will not protect this structure or the people within it being located underneath the drop ceilings,” said Cooper, believing they do not work at all. The proposal is to bring all 22 down to ceiling level and replace them if they do not work.
Cooper further stated even when that job is complete, the courthouse will still not be up to code, however, according to Cooper, the state only requires the job be up to standard with when they were put in.
“The detectors are beyond their life and will most likely have to be replaced. We were told to get the ones we’ve got working so we have a working system,” said Cooper.
Magistrate Russell Poore, who made the motion to allow Simplex Grinnell to work on the alarms said, “We need to do everything we can to protect the people in this building. The most important thing is safety, and you cannot put a dollar amount on people’s lives.”
Magistrate Drexel Johnson agreed with Poore and seconded his motion, which passed the court with a unanimous vote.