Fire Prevention Week Begins With Fire Search Demo

photo by Blackburn News

On Monday at 10:30 am, firefighters will demonstrate for students at Wilton Grove Public School what it’s like to search an unfamiliar building when you’re blinded by thick smoke.

Wearing full gear and blackout masks, firefighters will use the school’s play structure to mimic the furniture and other obstructions in a house. They will attempt to navigate through and around the equipment as if they were searching a home in flames.

London Fire’s Public Information Coordinator, Rick Jefferson, says it’s a child’s instinct to hide when there’s danger but they hope to show children how dangerous that is.

This is Fire Prevention Week and the focus is on working smoke detectors. It’s law that you must have them on every floor and outside every sleeping area. Jefferson says it’s part of his job to visit the homes of children who have started fires and too often he finds the family is at risk.

Jefferson also points out that smoke alarms cost as little as $10 and he says those cheaper ones work just as well as the more expensive ones. Response time for London firefighters is about 4.5 minutes and Jefferson adds, “We want to see everybody outside and waiting for us when we get there.” A projection of fire trends for this year shows that for the first time in many years, local fire incidents are on the rise.