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HVFD Promotes Fire Prevention

HVFD Promotes Fire Prevention


This week, October 3-9 is Fire Prevention Week. To celebrate and raise awareness of fire prevention and fire safety the Hemingford Volunteer Fire Department visited with Hemingford Elementary students in grades Pre K through Third. Fire Prevention week has been sponsored by the National Fire Protection Association for more than 90 years. The campaign is to educate everyone about simple but important actions they can take to keep themselves and those around them safe.

This year’s theme is: Learn the Sounds of Fire Safety!

“Hear a Beep, Get on Your Feet!” get out and stay out! Call 911 from outside.

“Hear a Chirp, Make a Change!” a chirping alarm needs attention. Replace the batteries or the entire unit if it’s over 10 years old. If you don’t remember how old the unit is, replace it!

The HVFD shared safety tips to help you “Learn the Sounds of Fire Safety”

  • A continuous set of three loud beeps—beep, beep, beep—means smoke or fire. Get out, call 9-1-1, and stay out.
  • A single chirp every 30 or 60 seconds means the battery is low and must be changed.
  • All smoke alarms must be replaced after 10 years.
  • Chirping that continues after the battery has been replaced means the alarm is at the end of its life and the unit must be replaced.
  • Make sure your smoke and CO alarms meet the needs of all your family members, including those with sensory or physical disabilities.

HVFD members Jake Frost, Shad Bryner, Robert Planansky, and Bobby Henderson met in the little gym at the school to discuss fire safety with the students.

Frost showed off the different detectors and told the students how important it was to learn where they are and to check the batteries in those detectors once a month.

He also quizzed the students on the importance of having not just one but two meeting places for your family to go in case of a fire.

“If there’s a fire what number do you call?” Frost asked.

“911!” the students yelled.

Frost gave the students homework after most of them did not know their current address.

“It’s important to know that so the fire department knows where to go,” he added.

Next they did a demonstration.

“This group of guys all look pretty regular,” said Frost. “If there was an emergency and they came to your house we want to show you what they would look like so you can see that they are not scary.”

“What him as he’s getting dressed,” Frost added. “He’s looking a little different.”

Henderson put on full firefighting gear to show and crawled around the group of students.

“Close your eyes, notice how it’s dark? That’s how it might look if it was all smoky,” Frost said. “He’s going to be talking and it’s going to sound kind of weird. He’s down on the ground because the heat and smoke are up high.”

With the lights off, Henderson called out to the students to see where they were.

“We want you to know how important it is for you to answer if a firefighter is calling out for you,” said Frost. “Should you hide and be quiet?” he asked the students. “NO!” they answered.  

“Yell out and be loud but stay low,” Frost said.  

They were taught about Home Fire Escape Planning and Practice:

• Drawing a map of each level of the home, showing all doors and windows

• Going to each room and pointing to the two ways out

• Making sure someone will help children, older adults, and people with disabilities wake up and get out

• Teaching children how to escape on their own in case you cannot help them

• Establishing a meeting place outside and away from the home where everyone can meet after exiting

• Having properly installed and maintained smoke alarms

• Pushing the smoke alarm button to start the drill

• Practicing what to do in case there is smoke: Get low and go. Get out fast.

• Practicing using different ways out and closing doors behind you as you leave

• Never going back for people, pets, or things

• Going to your outdoor meeting place

• Calling 9-1-1 or the local emergency number from a cell phone or a neighbor’s phone

With the winter months fast approaching/here already, it is important to know fire safety techniques for heating units.

• Heating equipment is one of the leading causes of home fires during the winter months.

• Space heaters are the type of equipment most often involved in home heating equipment fires.

• All heaters need space. Keep anything that can burn at least 3 feet away from heating equipment.

• Have a 3-foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heaters.

• Purchase and use only portable space heaters listed by a qualified testing laboratory.

• Have a qualified professional install heating equipment.

• Maintain heating equipment and chimneys by having them cleaned and inspected by a qualified professional at least once a year.

The individual classes then took turns checking out three of the rigs: Engine 432 and two rural fire trucks.

The students crawled through the big engine and sat in every seat before they were shown some of the equipment; the finally for the day was spraying the big hose on the rural fire truck, a fun experience for all of the students.

Teaching the students the importance of fire prevention is one of the highlights of being a member of the HVFD. Each year students thank the fire fighters with hand drawn cards or pictures. Those cards and/or pictures then decorate the fire hall.

Since January 1, 2021 the HVFD has answered: 39 fires, 91 EMS, 3 weather events. They have attended 19 meetings, trainings or drills. ​

The HVFD’s roster is currently sitting at a full squad of 30 members with a couple on the waiting list. The current members in alphabetical order are Shad Bryner, Robbie Buchheit, Mary Curtis, Seron Dillard, Jake Frost, Jordan Glendy, Jim Grumbles, Bobby Henderson, Mike Honstein, Ryan Hunter, Jess Huss, Barb Keegan, Jim Keegan, Taylor Keegan, Mark Klemke, Dan Kluver, Michelle Kluver, Kyle Kumpf, Tim Kumpf, Jim Miles, Robert Planansky, Marly Pehoviack, Aaron Sorensen, Jodine Sorensen, Mindy Stites, Mark Swanson, Mike Towne, Jameson Wood, Randy Wood and Ron Wood.

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