BRIDGEWATER — After a close call at Burnham School recently, Region 12 will now have custodians check school buildings on the weekends to ensure everything is working properly and prevent pipes from freezing.

“That is our stopgap until we can get a more permanent solution we can rely on,” Superintendent of Schools Megan Bennett told the Region 12 school board at a recent meeting.

The new protocol was instated after the polar vortex caused temperatures to dip so low over Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend that the three systems at Burnham School dropped to a single system while the building was closed for the holiday.

This meant a lot of the major equipment shut down, including the boiler and furnace, Bennett said.

Luckily, a custodian was in the building Tuesday morning clearing off ice to prepare for the students, noticed it was cold and called it in, she said.

School officials are looking into an alarm or alert system that will let them know if the power goes out and a similar situation happens. In the meantime though, custodians will check on the buildings if temperatures are below 20 degrees on the weekends.

Bennett said it could have been a “potentially worse situation” and these checks will prevent another from coming to fruition.

“That is our plan to make certain that we don’t walk into a very costly situation,” Bennett said.

kkoerting@newstimes.com; 203-731-3345