Constant false fire alarms cause trouble for students, teachers and parents at a primary school in Berlin-Friedrichshain. The alarm has been raised several times in some weeks and sometimes even up to three times a day since March at Jane Goodall Elementary School.

Each time the lesson is interrupted, students and teachers have to leave the building and gather in a schoolyard until the fire brigade gives the all-clear. Parents should reassure their children “to absorb and relieve any stress that may have been triggered,” the school management wrote to the families after another alarm in the middle of this week.

The alarms are not practice, “as some neighbors from the surrounding residential buildings suspect,” according to the school management. Pigeons flying through holes in the roof into the roof structure are to blame.

The alarm is triggered via a light barrier, which leads to the evacuation of the school. “Only after the fire brigade has checked whether there has actually been a fire can school operations be resumed.”

The responsible district office in Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg announced that experts had “found several previously undiscovered small damages (holes) in the roof”. Therefore, one suspects that the pigeons are to blame. The light barrier should actually react to smoke.