Written by Lindsey Burnworth
Last updated on October 23, 2012 @ 7:17PM
Created on October 23, 2012 @ 6:22PM
All commercial buildings in Elkins that have fire alarms and sprinkler systems inside them may soon be required to have Key Secure boxes.
Those boxes have keys to the building inside, and allow firefighters to gain access to them quickly. Not only are the key secure boxes a way for firefighters to get inside a building fast, they can also save the building from more damage.
If a fire alarm goes off, firefighters must be able to get inside quickly. When they don't have a key, they either have to break the door down or wait for the owner to bring them a key.
Another reason the boxes can help is if a sprinkler system would go off. Water damage usually costs an owner a lot of money, but if a fire department was able to get inside fast, they can usually save the building from that damage.
They also help in the case of a false alarm. By having the keys in the secure box, it cuts down on the time those firefighters have to be on the scene.
"A lot of the time it'll save a lot of the property damage. If you have a sprinkler going off in the middle of the night, us waiting there for the key holder, which could be 15 or 20 minutes or we take the door in, which causes a lot of damage. These boxes are around $300, we can go in, get the key out, go in and shut the system down, so it'll save a lot of property," said Chief Tom Meader of the Elkins Fire Department.
The boxes are very secure. Only firefighters have access to the keys required to open the Key Secure boxes.
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