FAIRCHILD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash. --
Team Fairchild firefighters are bringing fun and free activities to base residents to promote fire prevention awareness during Fire Prevention Week happening nationwide from Oct. 7 through 13, 2018.
The week was kicked off today with Col. Michael Johnson, 92nd Mission Support Group commander, who gathered alongside base fire department chiefs and Sparky the fire dog to help raise awareness to the base community.
“We're signing a fire awareness proclamation to make this week official,” Johnson said. "It's a good thing we have this initiative here."
The base’s firefighting Airmen are teaming up with the National Fire Protection Association, the official sponsor of national Fire Prevention Week, to promote this year’s Fire Prevention Week campaign, “Look. Listen. Learn. Be aware. Fire can happen anywhere,” which works to educate the public about basic but essential ways to quickly and safely escape a home fire.
“We know that people often make choices in fire situations that jeopardize their safety or even cost them their lives,” said TSgt Patrick Guthrie, 92nd Civil Engineering Squadron firefighter. “We need to do a better job of teaching people about the potentially life-saving difference escape planning and practice can make and motivating them to action.”
While NFPA and the Fairchild AFB Fire Department are focusing on home fires, these fire safety messages apply to virtually anywhere and anyone, no matter the age.
“Situational awareness is a skill people need to use wherever they go,” said Guthrie. “No matter where you are, look for available exits. If the alarm system sounds, take it seriously and exit the building immediately.”
Fire Prevention Week occurs annually, commemorating the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 that killed hundreds of people and devastated nearly four square miles of the city. In the aftermath of that blaze, Chicago became a beacon and center point of fire safety education, firefighting techniques and fire prevention to avoid such a disaster from reoccurring.
NFPA statistics show that the number of U.S. home fires has been steadily declining over the past few decades. However, the death rate per 1,000 home fires that are reported to fire departments was ten percent higher in 2016 than in 1980.
Today’s home fires burn faster than ever and you may have as little as one to two minutes to escape safely from the time a smoke alarm sounds.
Knowing how to use that time wisely takes planning and practice, which Team Fairchild firefighters will be sharing with base residents throughout the week with fun activities and fire awareness education.
Below is the coming week's schedule of events hosted by the 92nd Civil Engineer Squadron firefighters:
Tuesday, Oct. 9
7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. – Sparky at the base main & Thorpe road gates
4:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. – Fire truck parade through Stateside base housing
5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. - Base housing fire safety carnival at Colorado Park
Wednesday, Oct. 10
6:30 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. – Sparky at the base main & Thorpe road gates
10:00 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. – Storytime with Sparky at the base library
11 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. - Base Exchange display
Thursday, Oct. 11
4:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. – Fire truck parade through Tree-side base housing
5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. - Base housing fire safety carnival at Ft. Wright Oval Park
Friday, Oct. 12
10:45 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. - Base Exchange display
3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. – Sparky at the base main & Thorpe road gates
Saturday, Oct. 13
9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. – Fire Station tours (open to all Fairchild residents)
For more information about Fire Prevention week and home escape planning, visit www.firepreventionweek.org
or call the Fairchild Fire Prevention Office at (509) 247-5215.