Fire department home safety program wraps up spring session
By: Matt Durnan
| Posted: Thursday, May 15, 2014 10:43 am
The Airdrie Fire Department (AFD) has wrapped up its second full-home safety program, after visiting a total of 80 residences in April.
The program is a part of the Regional Fire Safety Education Coalition’s initiative to promote fire and life safety through home visits by on-duty firefighters.
AFD kicked off the program last year in conjunction with Fire Prevention Week in October, after running a trial of the program in 2012.
This year, firefighters stopped in the communities of Luxstone, Airdrie Meadows and Big Springs.
“We choose three communities mostly at random, but we ensure that we have one for each fire station,” said AFD Deputy Chief Linda Masson.
“We try to keep the number of houses we visit to around 80 so that it’s manageable for our crews.”
Out of the 80 total homes that firefighters visited, contact was made with 60 residents, with 59 per cent of those residents inviting AFD crews into their home to conduct safety checks.
“It’s a pretty extensive checklist that we go through,” said Masson. “We check the batteries in smoke detectors, furnaces, water heaters, storage of flammable liquids, and we also cover injury prevention, so things like keeping toys or obstacles off your stairs.”
In some instances, the AFD needed to install smoke detectors or replace old batteries, which were paid for by the program’s sponsor ConocoPhillips.
The number of residents that the AFD was able to make contact with and the number of in-home checks conducted were about on par with what Masson was expecting and she says compared to other communities that conduct similar programs, Airdrie is at or just above average in terms of resident response.
“We’d like to thank those residents who welcomed fire crews and took time from their busy day to participate in this important initiative,” said Masson.
The next series of home safety checks will take place in October, once again in conjunction with Fire Prevention Week.
For more information on upcoming AFD programs and safety tips, visit www.airdrie.ca