Latest Update:

Greenback School to reopen on Tuesday January 19.

School Board votes to reopen Greenback School (Jan. 14, 2010 school board meeting)


"Greenback School will be closed through Friday January 15, 2010 due to maintenance problems".

(Jan.12, 2010, Tuesday, Email 4:21PM)





Greenback School 01-02-2010.

Closed until further Notice

By: Pat Hunter

Jan. 11, 2010


The Loudon County Board of Education (BOE) met for their monthly workshop meeting on Monday Jan. 11th, which was rescheduled due bad weather last week. The School Board workshop took an unusual turn when Chairman Scott Newman announced an Emergency Called Board Session after hearing about a structural report and ongoing gas leaks. The Board voted to hold an Emergency Session to close the school indefinitely until the school is inspected and problems are repaired.

Leo Bradshaw, Maintenance-Purchasing Director was present to discuss the draft Structural Walkthrough “Report of Findings” from Hodge Associates and recent gas leaks.

Chairman Scott Newman spoke about closing Greenback School until they get a clean mechanical inspection.

School board Bill Marcus made a motion seconded by Lisa Russell to close Greenback School.

School Board Principal Joey Breedlove shared his concerns. I am very nervous about this; we are having the sweeps done. Breedlove was referring to certain corrective action required by the State Fire Marshall's office (see below).

Are you asking me if we can close the school tomorrow; is that what you are asking me? I can do whatever you ask me to, Breedlove replied. He wanted to know how long this would last. I hope that wouldn’t last too long replied board member Marcus. Marcus asked Bradshaw if the matter could be expedited; maybe 2-3 days depending on an on-site inspection.

Do we need to move the kids or leave them at home, asked board member Gary Ubben? There’s no way to move 700 kids added board member Van Shaver.

Bill Marcus shared a similar situation at Loudon Elementary School, which occurred 4-5-6 years ago.  They weren’t allowed to start school on time and had to go extra days. Maybe we can work that out and get forgiveness for the school. But the thing that I don’t want to do is ask a parent to forgive me because their kid went to school and got hurt, said Marcus.

Administrative assistant Joan Lovelace asked for the motion to be re-stated. The motion is to close Greenback School until we can get the proper assessment and repairs of the gas issues said Bill Marcus. By certified qualified individuals added board member Craig Simon.  Chairman Newman asked for clarification, no activity on that campus.

Newman called for a vote; voting yes were school board members Craig Simon, Van Shaver, Bill Marcus, Gary Ubben, Scott Newman, Lisa Russell, Larry Proaps and Leroy Tate.

The motion passed by unanimous vote. Absent were school board members Bobby Johnson, Jr. and Steve Harrelson. Both are Lenoir City employees.  

School board member Lisa Russell thanked the other school board members, I really appreciate that. Lisa Russell is the mother of three children who attend Greenback School.

When is it starting asked Ubben; tomorrow morning he was told. You can’t say tomorrow commented board member Leroy Tate, right now, right now!

Leo Bradshaw will meet with mechanical engineers on Tuesday (Jan 12, 2010) at 2:00 PM for an on-site inspection at the Greenback School to resolve the problems.




Greenback School.



Structural Walkthrough of Greenback School click to read  Report of Findings (DRAFT)



Immediate Corrective Action by the State Fire Marshall Office - Nashville


The Flammable Range (Explosive Range) of natural gas  is the range of a concentration of a gas or vapor that will burn (or explode) if an ignition source is introduced.
The limits are commonly called the "Lower Explosive or Flammable Limit" (LEL/LFL) and the "Upper Explosive or Flammable Limit" (UEL/UFL).  Those limits for natural gas is 5% (LEL/LFL) and 10% (UEL/UFL)  
Due to the numerous natural gas leaks at Greenback school, the following must be implemented for Greenback School ASAP:
1. The School system must install gas leak detection devices in the affected areas to initiate an evacuation signal (such as the fire alarm system or other approved system) within one (1) week. Until this can be accomplished, qualified personnel ( to be approved by the SFMO)  must be in place  to determine if any leaks develop.  The personnel must have proper detection devices that will indicate the explosive limit ranges. This must take place prior to the start of each school day, and at least twice more each school day ( in mid morning and afternoon)  This must take place until it has determined the problem(s) have been corrected.
2. The School System must employ a licensed mechanical engineer to evaluate the natural gas leak events that have occurred at the school. This includes any issues within the school or the provider side of the gas lines, the valves and equipment.  A report must be submitted to Chris Bainbridge, Director of Codes Enforcement with the State Fire Marshal 's Office (SFMO). The report must include what is causing the leaks or probable cause, and what action that needs to be implemented to correct the leak(s).
3.  The School System must submit a comprehensive emergency preparedness plan for natural gas leaks. This plans must be approved by the SFMO. The plans must include evacuation procedures and remedial action to be taken.  The plans must also indicate where the children and other occupants will be placed to assure their safety.


01-12-10 4:50PM Update