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  • Writer's pictureESSEX FREE PRESS

Fun firefighter day camp teaches safety

by Sylene Argent

Last week, the Town of Essex and Essex Fire & Rescue joined forces to offer youth a chance to learn about fire safety and fire prevention during a firefighter-themed summer day camp program.

Participating youth enjoyed learning a variety of skills from local firefighters, which included how to operate some of the firefighting equipment. They also learned how to react if they were ever in a crisis situation.

Jason Pillon, Assistant Deputy Chief, said this year’s camp was popular as there was a good-sized roster of participants each day. During the day camp, firefighters tried to instill in the youth the importance of having working smoke alarms and a carbon monoxide detector, to know two ways out of any room, to be able to identify fire safety hazards, and the importance of creating a fire escape plan.

Of course, the participants also got a chance to work around the fire trucks and try on some firefighting equipment.

The participants were then challenged, on the Friday afternoon of the summer day camp, to put everything they had learned to the test in a timed obstacle course. The youths were split into groups of two to reel in a heavy house, crawl through a tunnel, weave through pylons following a hose guide, and carry a dummy for a distance, before they finally took aim with a firehose to knock down wooden flames.

The obstacle course did more than just challenge the young participants to beat the clock while incorporating what they learned over the week, it also helped the day campers to improve their team work and leadership skills.

Though Essex Fire & Rescue is busy attending calls, its representatives connect with youth, who tend to be great ambassadors of fire safety messages as they typically take home those tips to their parents and guardians, any chance they can.

One outreach program hosted is the annual Fire Prevention Week, which takes place October 7-13 this year. The annual open house is scheduled to take place at all three Town of Essex fire stations on Wednesday, October 10th between 5:30 p.m. and 8 p.m.


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