Helena firefighters teach kids to plan ahead and be fire smart

Posted at 6:23 PM, Oct 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-07 20:57:34-04

October 6-12 is National Fire Prevention Week and the Helena Fire Department (HFD) are reminding everyone to be fire smart.

Around 1,000 second graders this week will have the chance to see fire engines up close and learn valuable skills from firefighters.

On Monday, students crawled through a smoke filled room and practiced “stop, drop and roll.”

This Year’s theme about making an escape plan should you need to evacuate your home.

HFD Fire Marshal Lou Antonick said the skills the students learned at the station can benefit everyone and ultimately save a life.

“This isn’t something just for the kids, it’s for everybody,” said Antonick. “Everybody should practice fire safety in their home, develop and escape plan and make sure to practice it.”

With an escape plan the entire household should know at least two ways out of every room and make sure all doors and windows can be easily opened.

Have an outside meeting place that is a safe distance from the home.

Practice a fire drill at night and during the day twice a year.

Children should also know how to escape on their own in case an adult can’t reach them.

Antonick would also like to remind people to check all of their smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

“Make sure they’re operational and have one adjacent to every sleeping area,” said Antonick.

Antonick said although it’s always busy at the fire station, HFD looks forward making time for the kids each year.

“It’s impressive, you talk to those kids down the road and they remember the day they came up here and everything we talked about,” said Antonick. “The kids really take this stuff to heart.”

It’s also a good time to have heating systems inspected. Systems should only be serviced by a professional in order to prevent potential carbon monoxide poisoning.