BY JAVIER ORTIZ
The El Centro Fire Department opened its doors to the public at Station 3 to show off their equipment and teach the public how to stay safe at home.
The department had many props for the kids to learn what a firefighter does and they had a little challenge circuit where they had to drag hose and carry ladders. The burn institute had their smoke trailer on display. It showed the importance of having smoke detectors in your home and having two ways out of your house.
Other local entities were there with booths promoting fire safety and health. El Centro Regional Medical Center had a booth with some goodies and information about the many specialties they offer at our local hospital. Lowes was showing off their smoke alarms and fire extinguishers that you can buy in the store to stay safe.
A popular prop for kids was the fire extinguisher training, where they got to put out a real fire. REACH was there as well for a short time before having to leave.
The real star of the show was Sparky, who was greeted with a lot of smiles from the children attending the open house event. A lot of people enjoyed the fire station tours where thy got to see the El Centro Fire Department’s newest installation.
I got to speak with the Public Information Officer of the fire department about some of the goals of this open house. He said that’s how they traditionally open Fire Prevention Week, with some community outreach and fire safety.
He also mentioned how they wanted to spread the message of how smoke detectors save lives and to have a meeting place for family members in case of a fire or earthquake emergencies. They also want to teach the community about E.D.I.T.H which means Exit Drills In The Home. This is where the family is aware of how to escape from the house in case of a fire or an earthquake and meet up either in front of their home or in designated spot nearby so everyone can be accounted for.
The fire department’s main goal in the fire service is life safety and if the family can all be accounted for in a situation where there is a fire, this makes the firefighter’s job easier when fighting a fire.