Local kids learn all about fire safety|City of Washington, Lowe’s host Fire Safety Day

Published 10:47 pm Sunday, October 11, 2009

Lifestyles & Features Editor

In wide-eyed wonder, Autumn Brown looked out over the landscape Saturday morning from high above the parking lot at Lowe’s in Washington.
The 11-year-old Bath resident was among the many adventurous souls who went aloft on a ladder platform operated by the City of Washington’s Department of Fire-Rescue-EMS-Inspections Services. Her tour guide was Josh Ingram, an engineer with the department.
The bird’s eye tour was part of this year’s Fire Safety Day, a cooperative effort between the City of Washington and Lowe’s Home Improvement Center. This was the third year for the event, according to division chief Jasper Hardison.
“This is Fire Prevention Week and we bring out the Safety House and answer general questions about fire services in the area,” Hardison said. “And Lowes does one of their kids clinics.”
Armed with small hammers, a dozen or more kids tackled a fire engine craft project provided by Lowes. The workshop was open to children in prekindergarten through sixth grade, according to Jack Willard, a Lowes sales specialist.
In an effort to raise public awareness of the importance of fire safety, several area fire departments were on hand with equipment and personnel. Represented in addition to the City of Washington were departments from Bath, Belhaven, Bunyan, Chocowinity, Clark’s Neck and Old Ford.
Since October is National Fire Safety Month, Hardison said his department is visiting local schools and day care centers to educate young students. Other fire departments from throughout the county are helping to spread the message through the schools, he added.
Goody bags were also distributed to youngsters who attended Saturday’s event. They contained pencils, fire safety stickers and information about 9-1-1 and fire hazards in the home.