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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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UI looks for ways to curb falling

Associated Press

MOSCOW – University of Idaho officials plan to survey each Greek residence for safety hazards following the second student fall in a two-week span from a third-floor fraternity house window.

Officials also plan to organize a Greek Alcohol Task Force for sorority and fraternity leaders to reassess their risk management policy.

Both students were seriously injured in the falls that occurred in the first month of classes.

Members of the Moscow Police Department, UI Dean of Students Bruce Pitman and Matthew Kurz, the director of the UI’s fraternity and sorority affairs, met with fraternity and sorority leadership on Thursday to find a way to prevent additional falls.

Pitman and Kurz said balconies, sleeping porches, upper floors of residences, and fire escapes and windows will be especially scrutinized.

“As far as I know, the chapter houses have passed safety inspections and are up to code,” Pitman said. “But there can be hazards created by simply moving furniture around and, obviously, putting beds in risky places.”

Pitman said fraternities and sororities are owned by private housing corporations and it is the responsibility of those companies to fix any structural safety hazards.

“They all have risk management guidelines from their international fraternities and sororities, and we’ve asked them to go over carefully with their chapter leadership to make sure they’re doing business according to the expectations that have been put down by their insurance companies and house corporations,” Pitman said.

Police say they don’t intend to make additional patrols, though they will continue to educate fraternity and sorority members on risky behavior and students’ legal responsibilities.

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