45179_towardssaferschoolconstruction_0 (2015) - Page 60

Key considerations for site selection Comparing potential sites can help stakeholders select the safest school sites available. This comparison should assess natural hazard risks but also site characteristics that could threaten students’ wellbeing or their capacity to learn. Possible questions may include: Steep slope: Is the proposed site on or near a steep slope where a landslide, rock fall, avalanche or similar hazards could injure students or damage the building? If steep slopes are unavoidable, will monitoring strategies and evacuation plans be in place to keep occupants safe? If flood sites are unavoidable, will the school building be elevated above expected flood levels, or will flood resistance be considered in the design and material selection? Near rivers: Does the proposed site become flooded from rivers, streams, drainage overflows, high tides or coastal storms? If flood sites are unavoidable, will the school building be elevated above expected flood levels, or will flood resistance be considered in the design and material selection? Unstable soils: In seismic areas, does the site avoid known or suspected soils that could become unstable in an earthquake? SECTION III: PLANNING Falling objects: In high-wind areas, is the site and nearby areas devoid of objects that could become wind-born (poorly secured signs, utilities, building parts, trees) and damage the school building or its occupants? High ground in high water: On tsunami-prone coastlines, is the site outside of the expected tsunami inundation zone for probable worst-case events? If not, is the site close enough to high ground for students and staff to safely evacuate in time, or will upper floors of the school be above inundation? Drinking water: Does the site have access to potable water for drinking and water for sanitation? SAFE TRANSIT? Will children walking to school need to pass along busy highways or cross dangerous water ways? If unavoidable, will students’ transit to and from school be supervised? Especially in urban and conflict areas, will students going to and from school have adequate security to protect them from molestation, kidnapping, or attack? Safe transit: Will children walking to school need to pass along busy highways or cross dangerous waterways? If unavoidable, will students’ transit to and from school be supervised? Especially in urban and conflict areas, will students going to and from school have adequate security to protect them from molestation, kidnapping or attack? 51