During the week of Oct. 4-10, the Pomeroy Fire Department will be observing National Fire Prevention Week. Although many hands-on activities are not possible in the local schools this year, we will still be conducting fire prevention awareness through various methods this year, including radio, billboards, posters, and social media platforms.
This year’s fire prevention week theme is, “Serve Up Fire Safety in the Kitchen.” This theme works to educate everyone about simple but important actions they can take to keep themselves and those around them safe. According to the National Fire Protection Association, cooking is the leading cause of home fires and home fire injuries in the United States.
A few cooking tips to remember that will keep you from having a cooking fire are: never leave cooking food unattended and use a timer to remind you that you are cooking, be alert while cooking: don’t cook if you are sleepy-have taken drugs or consumed alcohol, keep an oven mitt and pan lid nearby to smother flames in the event of a grease fire, and have a kid free zone of at least three feet around the stove and areas where hot food and drink is prepared or carried.
As a reminder, we encourage all citizens to check their smoke alarms, as they alert people to a fire in its earliest stage and can mean the difference between life and death. The Pomeroy Fire Department, in conjunction with the Ohio State Fire Marshal’s office, is in a drive to save lives and remind all citizens to install smoke detectors in every sleeping room, outside each separate sleeping area, and on every level of the home, including the basement. Test smoke alarms monthly by pushing the test button, replacing smoke alarm batteries twice a year if needed, closing your bedroom door before bed every night to limit fire growth in the event of a fire, and to practice your home fire escape plan regularly.
Finally, I encourage all citizens to support their local fire departments. Although this year’s fire prevention week activities are different than past years, fire prevention education is one of the main ways that we can successfully prevent fires and teach youth about fire safety. Remember that the life that you save might be your own.
Derek Miller is the Chief of the Pomeroy Fire Department and President of the Meigs County Firefighter’s Association.