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Firefighters visit campus, offer prevention tips to young students

Don’t play with matches, call 911 in case of an emergency and learn how to “stop, drop and roll,” Houston firefighters told PreK and Kindergarten students during a campus visit Oct. 7.

The tips came during an event set up by Ms. Simpson, the Northeast Campus librarian, in observance of National Fire Prevention Week, Oct. 6-12.  The students from all eight classes watched as representatives from the Houston Fire Department showed off their fire truck, firefighting equipment and firefighting gear.

The visit was timely because learning about fire prevention is part of the PreK curriculum. “This is what PreK has been talking about,” Ms. Simpson said.

In 2011, U.S. fire departments responded to 370,000 house fires, which caused 2,520 deaths, nearly 14,000 injuries and $6.9 billion in damage, according to the National Fire Protection Association. That translates into an average of seven home fatalities per day.

Young children such as those at Varnett can play a key role in fire prevention. Here are some of the safety rules:

*Don’t play with matches.
*Ask your parents to install on every floor and in the sleeping areas of the home.
*Remind your parents to test your smoke detectors once a month.
*In case of a fire, don’t hide. Go outside.
*If your clothes are on fire, stop, drop and roll until the fire is out.
*Have an escape plan and practice it with your family.
*Call 911 in the event of an emergency.

Firefighters visit Varnett every year to preach the message of fire prevention. It’s a great opportunity for firefighters to speak directly to children and for children to hear safety tips directly from firefighters. “The students were very excited,” Ms. Simpson said.

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