Serious flaws uncovered in Ohio school floor plans filed with police & attorney general database

Outdate, incomplete & innaccurate plans on file

CLEVELAND - An exclusive 5 On Your Side investigation has uncovered serious flaws in floor plans submitted by schools across Ohio that can confuse and slow police responding to school shootings.

Ohio law requires schools to file floor plans with local police agencies and a database maintained by the Ohio Attorney General's Office.

But our investigation found that main floor plans are so outdated and incomplete -- some are not even able to be deciphered by police responding to a potentially deadly scene.

Reno Contipelli is a Cuyahoga Heights Fire Department lieutenant and school board president who says some floor plans are useless.

"There are some schools who just scribbled things on a piece of paper," said Contipelli, who also is a key member of the Ohio Attorney General's School Safety Summit.

"Then, what we found," said Contipelli," is that there wasn't a uniform way to submit plans, how you go about submitting plans and what goes into a plan."

Our investigation found first responders, in some cases, couldn't read the blueprints provided, many were out of date and room numbers failed to match numbers on blueprints.

Contipelli said first responders need floor plans that are user friendly, efficient and simple to use.

Ohio lawmakers are currently considering toughening a state law requiring school districts to submit floors by requiring them to ensure that windows, doors, hallways and buildings and properly coded and numbered.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine is working with schools to improve their floor plan submissions, but concedes that 145 schools across Ohio still have not even submitted floor plans as required by state law.

NewsChannel5 is working to obtain this list of schools from the AG's office, and will post it on when it is sent to us.

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