(REHOBOTH BEACH, Del.) - Fire Prevention Week began back in 1922 when President Wilson set aside the day in recognition of the 50th anniversary of the Great Chicago Fire. The National Fire Protection Association has been sponsoring the now week-long campaign for over 90 years
Look, Listen, Learn. Those three key words make up this year's theme for Fire Prevention Week.
The Delaware State Fire School and Fire departments here in Sussex County are teaming up with the National Fire Protection Association to raise awareness for fire safety and they're kicking it off at the Rehoboth Beach bandstand.
Leonard Tylecki of the Rehoboth Beach Volunteer Fire Company says, "This is our event so we have everyone from our neighboring companies come over and help us from neighboring police agencies, the Forestry Department, the State Fire Marshall's Office, the Department of Insurance is here and we bring the information that's available for fire prevention and fire safety so that people can educate themselves and educate their children."
The Sussex County EMS participates by demonstrating 10-minute CPR's. "It's a non-certified application where we can at least get somebody to start compressions on someone who's gone into cardiac arrest until more help arrives," says Lars Granholm, the paramedic supervisor.
Those hands on demonstrations and tables of handouts and activities draw the community in with the goal of teaching them what hazards to look out for.
Michael Lowe, Senior Instructor at the Delaware State Fire School explains the message they're trying to get across in this campaign. "One take away we would like children to know about fire safety is that in the event of a fire, get out. Get out of the house, get outside, establish a meeting place with your family, and a safe escape route to get out in the event that there is a fire."
During Fire Prevention Week, fire companies typically hold open houses and visit their local elementary schools to give in-person demonstrations and lectures on fire safety.