Students rewarded for escape plans
Published 1:04 am Tuesday, November 8, 2011
A ride on an EMS stretcher, a ride in a fire engine, a pizza lunch and about two hours away from school were among the rewards Monday for four John Small Elementary School students chosen as winners in a Great Escape contest.
Kenny Carawan, Kathryn Jones, Gustavo Martinez and Gray Perry were winners of the EDITH contest sponsored by the Washington Fire-Rescue-EMS Department and conducted last month during National Fire Prevention Month. The four students also were treated to a visit by Sparky, the firedog, and being elevated into the air by the department’s aerial platform.
The students were asked to prepare EDITH plans. EDITH stands for “Exit drills in the home.” Students drew floor plans of their homes. The drawings had to show all rooms, hallways, windows, door and exits. They had to show locations of smoke detectors and fire extinguishers. The drawings also had to show an outside meeting place for family members to use in case of a fire.
Division Chief Jasper Hardison supervised the transport of the students from the school to the headquarters fire station in downtown Washington. Students were transported on a stretcher from classrooms or the cafetorium to a fire engine waiting for them outside the school. A caravan that included a fire engine, an ambulance and other vehicles made its way to the department’s headquarters station.
During the pizza luncheon, attended by family members of some of the students and others, Hardison talked about the importance of a family having an escape plan and practicing exit drills from a house based on those plans.
“It was fun,” said fifth-grader Kathryn Jones about being elevated in the aerial platform. “You could see a bunch of stuff, stuff like a bunch of buildings.”
Kathryn said she spent about an hour working on her plan.
Fourth-grader Gray Perry said she also spent about an hour working on her plan, her first-ever EDITH drawing.
“I don’t know,” she replied when asked what was the best part of her experience in the aerial platform.
Fifth-grader Gustavo Martinez was quick to respond with this one-word answer when asked about his aerial-platform experience: “Cool.”
“Looking at the roofs,” he said when describing the best part of that experience.
“No … sir,” he replied when asked if he could have handled the aerial platform extending higher than it did.
He also spent about an hour on his plan.
Gustavo said EDITH plans are important because they help families prepare for safe, orderly exits from their homes in case of a fire or similar emergency.
“I put a lot work into it. It took me two hours,” said Kenny Carawan about developing his plan.
“I was excited,” he said about learning he was among the contest winners.