Kids learn fire safety - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Kids learn fire safety

October 5, 2005

Valdosta - They're only three years old, but these pre-schoolers are taking in valuable lessons that can save their lives. "We teach them how to get out of a house, stop, drop and roll, and those type things," said Captain John Baty.

Thirty-nine children were killed in fires in Georgia last year, and two recently died when their mobile home in Brooks County burned. Valdosta firefighters want to make sure these kids don't become one of those statistics. "They're going to be able to pass the message onto their parents," said Baty.

Messages like always having a smoke detector in their home, preferably in every bedroom. And if they awake to a fire, remembering to touch the door and check for heat. "If the doors are hot, you have fire on the other side, if its cool, then they'll proceed to the front door," said Williams.

And instead of running out, crawl and stay low. "They need to get below the smoke," said Lt. James Williams.

Firefighters say the best way parents can keep their kids safe from a fire is to have a family emergency plan, and practice it at home, just like they practice fire drills at school. It should include a staging area, the parents should stress very strongly for the kids to stay out once they get out," said Williams.

"You need to have two ways out and make sure they have a meeting place," said Baty.

Simple lessons that if put into action properly, can mean the difference between life and death for your family.

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