By Tia Lyons
In a structure fire, every second counts, and during Fire Prevention Week, which starts today, fire departments across the country will be pushing that message to encourage citizens to develop a fire escape plan.
The El Dorado Fire Department will kick off Fire Prevention Week from noon until 3 p.m. today with an open house at Central Fire Station, 204 N. West Ave., next to City Hall.
Fire Chief Chad Mosby said the open house is one of several events the EFD has planned throughout the week to promote the theme of Fire Prevention Week: “Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out.”
Mosby is inviting the community to attend today’s open house.
“This will be a chance for the public to see what we do and the equipment we have. I think people will be surprised about all the capabilities that we have,” Mosby said.
Like the National Fire Protection Association, Mosby said the EFD is using the “Every Second” public education campaign to reinforce the importance of having an escape plan in the event of a structure fire.
In addition to Prevention Week activities that are planned with El Dorado schools this week,
Mosby issued a reminder that Domino’s Pizza is partnering with the EFD to make sure local citizens have working smoke detectors in their homes.
Customers who place delivery orders between 5 and 7 p.m. Monday may randomly be selected to have their food delivered aboard a fire engine.
Firefighters will check to see if there is a working smoke detector in the home.
If not, the EFD will replace the batteries in the smoke detector(s) or provide a free smoke detector for the household.
Customers who have working smoke detectors will receive their delivery orders for free.
Calvin Barcomb, the franchise owner of Domino’s El Dorado store, 1300 N. West Ave., said the partnership not only promotes fire safety, but also provides rewards for citizens who make fire safety a priority.
“You’ll either get a free smoke detector or free pizza,” Mosby said.
The EFD shared some tips to highlight key points in the Fire Prevention Week campaign, including:
• Draw a map of your home with all members of your household, marking two exits from each room and a path to the outside from each exit. A grid is available at www.nfpa.org to use as a guide.
• Practice your home fire drill twice a year, conduct one drill at night and the other during the day. Also, practice using different ways out.
• Teach children how to escape on their own in case parents aren’t able to help them.
• Make sure the number of your home is clearly marked and easy for the fire department to find.
• Close doors behind you as you leave. This may slow the spread of smoke, heat and fire.
• Once you get outside, stay outside. Never go back inside a burning building.
Tia Lyons may be contacted at 870-862-6611 or tlyons@ eldoradonews. com.