By: Jana L. Davidson, Education Content Specialist for the Progressive Agriculture Foundation
Progressive Agriculture Safety Day® Coordinator, Chris Tomky, had no idea the impact her May 18th Safety Day in Imperial, Nebraska would have on the community. Since Tomky began hosting Safety Days for her local community, fire safety has always been an important lesson taught each year. Tomky credits the support of the Imperial Volunteer Fire Department and the donation of fire extinguishers from Tri-State Fire Extinguisher, a local business, to ensure participants learn a variety of fire safety tips. Through one-on-one, hands-on education, all Safety Day participants learn how to use a fire extinguisher.
This year, Tomky went from a community Progressive Agriculture Safety Day® to a school event with Chase County Public Schools for children in Kindergarten through sixth grade. Eleven year old participant, JD Tuller, put the information he gained to use this summer when he witnessed a fire at a neighbor’s home. According to Imperial Fire Chief, Nick Schultz, Tuller’s quick actions and proper use of a fire extinguisher was crucial in keeping the fire contained to the porch.
Both fire extinguishers and smoke detectors play a vital role in saving lives. Each October, the National Fire Protection Association leads efforts in fire prevention. During October 9th – 15th, we celebrate Fire Prevention Week and bring awareness to a variety of areas dealing with fire safety. This year’s theme, “Don’t Wait – Check the Date! Replace Smoke Alarms Every 10 Years,” represents the final year of a three-year effort to educate the public about basic but essential elements of smoke alarm safety. For the safety of you and your family, here are three tips related to smoke detectors:
- Smoke alarms should be replaced every 10 years.
- Make sure you know how old all the smoke alarms are in your home.
- To find out how old a smoke alarm is, look at the date of manufacture on the back of the alarm; the alarm should be replaced 10 years from that date.
In addition to homes, smoke detectors are just as important to farms and ranches and should be monitored in the same manner. Fire extinguishers should be accessible in barns and on farm equipment. Families should prepare for a fire and work together on creating a fire evacuation plan for their home and farm.
Last year, fire safety was the top lesson taught at Progressive Agriculture Safety Days®. Help lead the crusade to bring safety and health information to your community by hosting a Safety Day. Visit www.progressiveag.org or call us toll-free at 888-257-3529 for more information or to apply. Since 1995, more than 1.5 million children and adults have been impacted by the Progressive Agriculture Safety Day® program.
Photo: A participant at a 2016 Progressive Agriculture Safety Day® in Imperial, Nebraska learns how to properly use a fire extinguisher. More than 65% of Progressive Agriculture Safety Days® in North America offer a lesson on fire safety each year.