NBC10 Investigators Earn SPJ Award for Schools Failing Fire Drills Series - NBC 10 Philadelphia
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NBC10 Investigators Earn SPJ Award for Schools Failing Fire Drills Series

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Congratulations to the NBC10 Investigators! The NBC10 Investigators were honored by the “Society of Professional Journalists” for their series on failing fire drills at Philadelphia public schools. (Published Monday, May 1, 2017)

    A national group has awarded the NBC10 Investigators' work exposing failing grades for fire drills at Philadelphia schools.

    The Society for Professional Journalists named Mitch Blacher’s "Failing at Fire Drills" series as the 2016 Sigma Delta Chi Awards winner for investigative reporting at a large-market station. Failing at Fire Drills: Why Aren't Some Schools Following the Fire Code?Failing at Fire Drills: Why Aren't Some Schools Following the Fire Code?

    In part 2 of the "Failing at Fire Drills," series, NBC10 investigative reporter Mitch Blacher looks into why one of Philly's safety agencies didn't raise the red flag regarding schools not following the fire code.
    (Published Thursday, May 19, 2016)

    "Teamwork, perseverance and demanding accountability were paramount in doing this kind of reporting," Mitch said while calling the recognition "an extreme honor." NBC10 Investigators: School Fire Drills Report Prompts Better PracticesNBC10 Investigators: School Fire Drills Report Prompts Better Practices

    After the NBC10 Investigators exposed that the majority of Philadelphia schools were not holding enough fire drills, breaking the city's fire code, some local schools decided to take a hard look at their practices. Fox Chase Elementary, one of the schools that wasn't complying with the fire code, invited NBC10 to observe a drill. Mitch Blacher reports.
    (Published Wednesday, May 25, 2016)

    Producer Jim O’Donnell and photojournalists Dan Lee and Charlie Wellock joined Mitch in the acknowledgment but the report also received support from more members of the investigative team. NBC10 Investigators: Some Philadelphia Schools Failing at Fire DrillsNBC10 Investigators: Some Philadelphia Schools Failing at Fire Drills

    Philadelphia schools have been failing at fire drills. NBC10 Investigative reporter Mitch Blacher has proof the district told the state the drills were done when they really weren’t.
    (Published Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2016)

    "While this is a team win, the bulk of the work was done by Mitch Blacher, Charlie Wellock, Dan Lee, Katie Suiters, Zinnia Maldonado and the leader of the team Jim O’Donnell," said NBC10 vice president of news Anzio Williams. Checking Fire Safety inside Your HouseholdChecking Fire Safety inside Your Household

    Do your children know how to escape your house if a fire breaks out? An insurance company's survey found only about half of parents say their children know who to escape if a fire occurs.
    (Published Saturday, Oct. 15, 2016)

    The series searched for answers from school leaders about why some schools in Philadelphia weren’t following the fire code and holding potentially life-saving drills. NBC10 Investigators Fire Drill Probe Forces ChangeNBC10 Investigators Fire Drill Probe Forces Change

    A series of investigative reports into issues with fire drills at Philadelphia public schools has prompted the district to change policies.
    (Published Friday, Aug. 19, 2016)

    "You may recall Mitch Blacher asking tough questions of Philly School Superintendent William Hite that led to the school system changes," Williams said.  How Many Schools Don't Perform Fire Drills?How Many Schools Don't Perform Fire Drills?

    The NBC10 Investigators found superintendents across schools in our region who said they performed fire drills when their own records show they did not. NBC10 Investigative Reporter Mitch Blacher has more details on the alarming number of local schools who failed to participate in fire drills.

    (Published Monday, Oct. 31, 2016)