Ascension : Fire Prevention Week
Submitted by The Islander (Islander Editors) 17.11.2011 (Article Archived on 01.12.2011)
Fire Prevention Week has deep seeded roots within the United States and is celebrated annually every October.
Fire Prevention Week has deep seeded roots within the United States and is celebrated annually every October. The “Great Chicago Fire” took place on October 8, 1871 and burned out of control for 3 days. Had it not been for rain the fire may have burned for weeks. In the wake of its destructive force; 18,000 buildings were totally destroyed (literally burnt to the ground), 100,000 families were left homeless, 300 people died, over 10,000 more were injured, and an estimated $200 million in property damage was reported. It was then, as it remains today, the worst fire in US History.
From the devastation rose several groups, the largest being the National Fire Protection Association, or NFPA. They all had one common goal; to provide uniformed standards and guidelines for constructing buildings, and insuring fire safety measures for all of its occupants.
Fire Departments throughout the United States and Military Bases overseas celebrate Fire Prevention Week by hosting a number of events aimed at creating fire safety awareness among the local population. Visiting schools is just one way to spread the word of fire safety, and it’s one of the most enjoyable times for both firemen and students alike.
Colin Lawrence (Base Fire Inspector) assists Justine Yon (Base Clinic) on how to properly aim and extinguisher
a gasoline fire using a 10-pound portable extinguisher. Can you feel the heat?
Here on Ascension AAF, members of the CSR Fire Department hosted several days of hands-on fire extinguisher training to over 190 CSR employees. The Fire Department Inspectors also conducted 15 no-notice fire and evacuation exercises at nearly every CSR work center throughout the island.
Not to be outdone by the children who participated in the Fire Safety Poster Contest at the Two Boats School, members of B-Shift constructed their own posters for display. Under the leadership of their Crew Chief, Mark Greentree, they took their fire equipment and posters to the general public where they allowed both on-base and off-base personnel the opportunity to vote for their favorite poster.
This year, CSR and AIG Fire Services were joined by Serco firefighters as they all invaded the Two Boats School. What started out as a quiet Wednesday afternoon erupted into shouts of “FIRE” as the alarm bells rang, smoke bellowed out from behind several classrooms, and emergency sirens could be heard in the distance?
Firefighting equipment from CSR, AIG, and Serco Fire Departments swing into action during the Fire Drill at the Two Boats School.
It took the combined effort of all three island Fire Departments, six fire engines, nearly 30 firefighters, and with the help and assistance of several of our young volunteer firefighters the simulated fire was brought under control and the School was saved.
Students from Two Boats School practice firefighting techniques with a Serco Firefighter
during Fire Prevention Week, Oct. 12, 2011.
Students and teachers gathered around the smaller playground where they all received a class on fire safety in the home which included the proper use and sounds of a smoke detector, plus a hands-on class on how to use a portable fire extinguisher. Several “lucky” students even got to try their hand at extinguishing a real gasoline fire.
Ian Oliver, an AIG Firefighter, directs Nyreeka Lawrence as she attempts to extinguish a gasoline fire using
a 5-pound Dry Chemical extinguisher. Isn’t she brave?
Afterwards, Rescue Team members from both CSR and AIG began an auto-extrication demonstration on how to safely remove a car from its trapped victims. Using their Hurst Rescue Tools, or “Jaws” as it is most commonly referred too, it wasn’t long before all 4 doors and the roof of the vehicle were removed. Anybody need a convertible?
Immediately following these demonstrations, students were turned loose to visit with all of the firemen, tour each of the fire trucks now set up on display, try out some firefighting bunker gear, and learn more about the specialized tools and equipment used to protect people. The day ended with all of the students being treated with ‘goodie bags’ filled with coloring books, hats, fire safety literature, stickers, and of course, candy!
Under the watchful eye and supervision of Billy Minto (AIG Senior Fire Officer) firefighters from both CSR and AIG
disassemble the vehicle as students look on and cheer.
As firefighters, we would like to express our thanks and gratitude to all who made this year’s Fire Prevention Week activities such a success: To all of our Sponsors who donated more than £500 in cash, merchandise, and gift certificates for our Poster Design and Essay Contest winners. From our contest judges, to the Staff of Two Boats School, and to all of the firemen who volunteered their time and efforts to ensure that everyone had such a great time… we thank you!
CSR Firefighters Jonah Williams, Dennis Stroud, and Brian Davis hand out hats
and ‘goodie bags’ to all of the students and facility members of the Two Boats School.
“Protect Your Family from Fire” and stay fire safe all year round. If you live in Georgetown, Two Boats, or Travelers Hill and need to report a Fire, call 6333.
Dial 911 if you live on-base to report a Fire, or if you require Police or Medical assistance.