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Do you have fire drills for kids at home? Brentwood firefighters say you should

Do you have fire drills for kids at home? Brentwood firefighters say you should

Photo: From left, Firefighter and Paramedic Derek Hershner, Engineer Kevin Parrick and Firefighter and EMT Tyler Braden. The firefighters wore special shirts with pink lettering to commemorate Breast Cancer Awareness Month.


Brentwood firefighters have been out and about the city this week spreading the word about Fire Prevention Week.

This annual, national week of observance and education has been held since the 1920s when President Calvin Coolidge declared the first one.

It is always held to overlap Oct. 9, the day that the Great Chicago Fire reached its zenith of destruction.

On Wednesday afternoon, the Brentwood Home Page caught up with some firefighters outside the Brentwood Library where they had set up a table to hand out activity books, plastic firefighter hats and stickers to kids. They also gave tours of their firetruck nearby.

Each year, Fire Prevention Week has a theme. This year’s is “Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!”

Engineer Kevin Parrick explained the theme.

“If they can’t get out of their house one way, down the hallway, what’s their second option?” he asked. “What do you do if you’re stuck in a room upstairs and can’t get out of the hallway?”

Parrick said that all families needed to have a plan of what to do and where to go in the event of a fire. He encouraged families to practice that plan at home.

“Kids have fire drills at school,” he said. “We talk to some parents about having fire drills at their home.”

The firefighters did not just limit their advice to this year’s specific theme, though. They also talked about basic steps that families can take to protect against fires each and every year, especially as the holidays start approaching and people step up their use of objects like candles and deep-fryers.

Parrick reminded families that they should regularly check their smoke detectors. He also recommended changing the detectors’ batteries twice a year.

“When you change your clocks, change your batteries,” Parrick said, referring to daylight saving time. 

Daylight saving time ends on the first Sunday in November, Nov. 5.


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