About 50 members of the Crowley’s Ridge Christian Homeschoolers got to see first hand how firefighters work. The group and some of the children’s parents visited the new Number 1 fire station on Sept. 30, and even got to experience being inside a smoke-filled building.
Firefighters at the station explained the use and maintenance of smoke detectors. “If you can afford one per room,” said firefighter Lt. William Orr, “get one per room.”
Orr also gave tips on the best ways to escape a building on fire. “When you get out of the house,” he said, “go to a place your family has already chosen to gather, so you’ll know if anyone is missing.”
Firefighter Drew Brewer demonstrated how quickly a firefighter can don the “turnout” firefighting ensemble. He donned his for the children in one minute, 16 seconds. “As long as they can get them on in under two minutes, we’re happy,” said Fire Capt. Brian Carter.
Firefighters also showed the children around the department’s 100-foot ladder truck, the pumper truck and its rescue vehicle. And they got to practice how to escape from a room filling with smoke, in the department’s Smoke House.
“First, touch the doorknob with the back of your hand,” said Orr. “Don’t use the front because if it’s hot you’ll get burned and you’ll need your hands to get out.” If the doorknob is hot, he said, then one should go out through a window, and head for the predesignated outside meeting place.”
Mindy Tritch of the Crowley’s Ridge Christian Homeschoolers said there are about 100 participating children. “We have about 40 families,” she said, “and all the parents can serve as instructors.”
Tritch said the group meets every Tuesday at 9 a.m. at Westview Baptist Church. “And once a month we have a field trip,” she said.
Tritch said the group offers various elective courses as well as physical education. “The electives include organic art, sewing, hunting and fishing, and wildlife education,” she said.