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Memphis News & Weather | Memphis, TN | WATN - localmemphis.com

MFD kicks off National Fire Prevention Week by educating children

The Memphis Fire Department is focusing on educating youth on how to stay safe during a fire for this year’s Fire Prevention Week.

MEMPHIS,Tenn. (localmemphis.com) – The Memphis Fire Department is focusing on educatingyouth on how to stay safe during a fire for this year’s Fire Prevention Week.

Tokick off the week, Memphis Fire paid a visit Monday to Robert R. ChurchElementary in Whitehaven. At the school, they taught children as young as Pre-Kwhat to do in the event of a fire.

Thisyear’s theme is “Not every hero wears a cape. Plan and practice yourescape.”

“Justlike they do the fire drills here at school, we want them to know how to getout at home. Know two ways out of every room, door or a window, and know thesound of a smoke alarm – beep, beep, beep – know that sound that means get upand get out,” MFD Fire Education Specialist Kimberly Strong said.

Lt.Wayne Cooke said there’s been an estimated seven deaths in fires this year andall were adults. Despite those numbers, Lt. Cooke said progress is being made.

“Thisis why our education, public education, is crucial. Why we’re in theschools,” Lt. Cooke said. “We have had child heroes where they havesaved their entire family by waking them up, knowing what to look for.”

While“stop, drop and roll” is always a focal point in fire safetyeducation, Strong said one of the issues they’re trying to overcome withchildren is teaching them to not hide during a fire and to not be afraid offirefighters.

“Inthat costume is a real person so remember, the firefighters are your friends.Never hide. Go outside. Stay alive,” Strong said.

MemphisPolice Department, Shelby County Sheriff’s Department and the Office ofEmergency Management are assisting MFD during the Fire Prevention Week events.

They’llalso go to Berclair Elementary on Wednesday. On Friday, the department ispartnering with St. Jude for a fire safety event from 10:00 a.m. until 2:00p.m.