fire prevention week

"Plan and practice your escape."

A kindergartener tentatively laid face down on the carpet, her classmates making a circle around her while they awaited their turn. "Good. Now cover your eyes," encouraged Fireman Tom. She did, then rolled two turns and smiled. "That's it," the firefighter said. "That's called stop, drop, and roll."

Learning and practicing fire-safe behaviors is what Fire Prevention Week is all about. At Katonah-Lewisboro’s elementary schools, the national initiative has a neighborly, friendly face.  Many of the firefighters are graduates of the schools they visit. For instance, Fireman Tom--Vista Fire Department District Manager Thomas Ritchey--at Meadow Pond Elementary School, was a member of one of the first classes to graduate from the school. He has led Fire Prevention Week programs there for over two dozen years. 

The 2019 theme for Fire Prevention Week is "Plan and practice your escape." All of Katonah-Lewisboro’s elementary students met with real firefighters from their local fire department and learned about the importance of getting out of a building quickly if they saw a fire. Age-specific programs helped students quell potential fears by listening to a firefighter in a ventilator mask, feeling firefighter gloves, looking at various rescue tools and sitting in a fire truck. Some fifth graders crawled through an actual smoke room on their hands and knees so that they would be prepared for an emergency situation of that type.