Clinic to focus on fire safety, prevention

Published 11:28 pm Monday, September 24, 2012

Washington’s Lowe’s Home Improvement presents its Build ‘n’ Grow Kids Clinic slated for Oct. 6 at 10 a.m.
The clinic and its related events are part of the observance of National Fire Prevention and Safety Week.  The events include a competition between firefighters, static displays of firefighting equipment and a fundraiser for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. All children who sign up for the clinic will be eligible to receive prizes to be awarded during the event. The firemen’s competition is expected to begin about 10:30 a.m. and last several hours.
Brian Lanning, a sales specialist at Lowe’s, the said the clinic will be larger than previous clinics.
“It’s a kids’ clinic that’s designed around fire prevention and safety in your home. What we do is we have the kids come out on Saturday morning. They build a fire truck from a kit that’s provided by Lowe’s,” he said.
Firefighters will talk with children about the importance of fire prevention around their homes and the need to develop an escape plan should their homes catch fire.
“What they do is explain to them, ‘Hey, this is a way to be safe. You don’t want to put any type of clutter around your stove, your fireplace. They point that out,” Lanning said of the firefighters’ remarks to the children.
Lanning said clinic organizers have added a “twist to it.”
“There are two new factors involved. The firemen’s association in Beaufort County has gotten together. They have decided to put on a condensed firemen’s competition between departments. … So, we’re going to have various departments around the county competing against each other. That gives the kids a way to see what firefighters do, show that firefighters are not scary, because a lot of kids have a problem, you know, with seeing a fireman in his gear. With all of his (self-contained breather apparatus), turnout gear on, his helmet and his mask, it’s a real scary thing for them man times,” Lanning said. “This is a way to show kids that firemen are just like mom and dad, grandma and grandpa, brother and sister. They’re just like you and me.”
The Muscular Dystrophy Association has “gotten onboard with this thing,” Lanning said.
Miss Emma, the good-will ambassador for the MDA presence in eastern North Carolina, will be part of the MDA fundraiser, he noted. Miss Emma is from Grimesland, he said.
Money raised by the fundraiser will be used to help send children with muscular dystrophy to a summer camp, Lanning said.

About Mike Voss

Mike Voss is the contributing editor at the Washington Daily News. He has a daughter and four grandchildren. Except for nearly six years he worked at the Free Lance-Star in Fredericksburg, Va., in the early to mid-1990s, he has been at the Daily News since April 1986.
Journalism awards:
• Pulitzer Prize for Meritorious Public Service, 1990.
• Society of Professional Journalists: Sigma Delta Chi Award, Bronze Medallion.
• Associated Press Managing Editors’ Public Service Award.
• Investigative Reporters & Editors’ Award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Public Service Award, 1989.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Investigative Reporting, 1990.
All those were for the articles he and Betty Gray wrote about the city’s contaminated water system in 1989-1990.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Investigative Reporting, 1991.
• North Carolina Press Association, Third Place, General News Reporting, 2005.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Lighter Columns, 2006.
Recently learned he will receive another award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Lighter Columns, 2010.
4. Lectured at or served on seminar panels at journalism schools at UNC-Chapel Hill, University of Maryland, Columbia University, Mary Washington University and Francis Marion University.

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