Litchfield Firefighters Prepare Families with Firsthand Look at Fire Prevention

October 10, 2014

by AJ Dickinson

Area residents were seeing red on Friday, October 3, when the Litchfield Fire Department held its Annual Truck Parade, the official kick-off to Fire Prevention Week.  At 6:30 p.m. fire trucks from Litchfield and many surrounding towns could be seen driving through every main street and corridor with their lights flashing, reminding people of the nationally recognized Fire Prevention Week. Litchfield citizens all over town brought out their lawn chairs to see the spectacle with their families.

The following day, Saturday, October 4, the LFD held its annual open house at the fire department.  Although there was some slight precipitation, many families arrived to take part in the fun and games, which have been provided annually for over 25 years.  The open house was jam packed with exciting activities.  If the kids weren’t trying their skills at the fire hose game that had wooden fire targets set up for the youngsters to aim at, they were in the smoke machine-simulated fire trailer or actually putting out a live fire with a extinguisher.

The excitement seemed endless from the cotton candy, burgers, hot dogs and chili contest for refreshments to the face painting, foam pit and tunnel crawl where kids got to see how difficult it is to crawl through a small opening with full fire gear on.

Many of the firefighters look forward to Fire Prevention Week because they get to talk to the kids at the open house and go into the schools to inform the children of basic fire facts.  Most importantly, the children are told, if they find themselves in a fire, they should evacuate immediately and then call the fire department.  Also, they are urged not to hide during a fire and not to be afraid of a firefighter equipped with full gear.  At the open house it is very important for the kids to see a firefighter put on the gear.  Instead of transforming the firefighter into an unidentified figure, the children can learn not to be afraid of uniformed firefighters who may be looking for them in a fire scenario.

With so much offered at the open house which gave Old Home Days a run for its money, credit is given to the effort, collaboration and team work of the Litchfield Fire Department who were there hours before 1 p.m. when the event started and hours after it ended at 4.

Lieutenant Ed Glency reflected on behalf of his fellow firefighters’ efforts that day by saying, “Today is really a result of a lot of collaboration between everybody at the fire department; it really shows the power of what a team can do and what it is all about.  We are a team.”