Firefighters teach kids about fire prevention | News | The Press and Standard

by | October 27, 2017 5:00 am

Last Updated: October 25, 2017 at 10:24 am

Colleton County Fire-Rescue has completed its month-long Fire Prevention and Life Safety Education.
The program actually runs throughout the year with presentations and demonstrations for all age groups, but a concentrated effort to educate the younger school-aged children coincides with National Fire Prevention Week during the month of October, Fire Chief Barry McRoy said.
Because of the large number of students and schools involved, Fire-Rescue’s program is stretched out over the entire month to reach all public and private elementary schools in the unincorporated areas, as well as the pre-schools and day care centers.
Battalion Chief Richard Sheffield and Captain Michael Banks of the Fire Marshal’s Office coordinate the activities which start with pre-K.
A different presentation is presented to each age group, with more information added each year to review and reinforce the fire safety message.
The children learn the proper way to call 9-1-1, give accurate information to dispatchers and how to safely exit their homes. They learn and practice “Stop, Drop and Roll” in case their clothes catch on fire, seat belt use, general home safety and how smoke alarms operate.
Patches, a robot Dalmatian who drives his own miniature fire truck, interacts with the students asking questions and helping firefighters review the topics contained in the program.
Second-grade students also participate in a countywide coloring contest. Students are given a 10-question Fire Safety Test and then color the picture on the opposite side.
Those who answer all of the questions correctly are then judged on the picture. The winner is awarded a new bicycle and helmet in November. Two runnersup receive a gift card.
Third-grade students tour the Fire Safety House and receive a complete review of all of the information they have received over the past several years.
The Fire Safety House is a small replica of a residence containing three props: a living room with fireplace, a kitchen and a bedroom. The students are taught about fireplace safety, the correct use of the 9-1-1 emergency telephone system, kitchen safety, the proper way to exit a building during a fire and the importance of having a meeting place outside of the home for emergencies.
Breathable smoke is used to simulate a fire and the children get to exit the second floor using an escape ladder. Safety materials are distributed to the students.

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