Firefighters try new suits - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Firefighters try new suits

AFD's Johnnie Johnson AFD's Johnnie Johnson
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August 6, 2003

Albany --  Firefighters will look like a bunch of real clowns, thanks to one of their inspectors. She put together professional looking clown suits for the firefighters, knowing they will save lives.

Albany Fire Inspector Johnnie Johnson put together seven clown suits for fire fighters to wear when they give prevention talks to kids. Johnson said "They will listen once you do little silly things to get their attention, they will listen."

In October the Albany Fire Department hosts kids fire safety days for 6,000 students around South Georgia. The fire fighters dress like clowns and do funny skits, to teach the kids about fire prevention. But Johnson thought the clown suits could much better quality, for getting across life saving information.

Johnson said " We teach not to play with matches, not to play with lighters. If they find matches or lighters give them to their parents. Not to hide once they start a fire. If the firemen come in, make sure they come out so they can find them."

Johnson said the children pay much better attention to the firefighters when they are dressed like clowns. She said the most important thing is that they get the students to remember their fire safety messages.

This year firefighters will look like real clowns, while giving their life saving act. And Johnnie said they really enjoy this part of their job. Johnson said "I think they enjoy it just as much as the kids."

Johnson spent about a week and a half making the clown suits, in her spare time between fire inspections.

posted at 3:10 PM byjimw@walb.com