When the flames started in an LA family’s kitchen, two parents were able to extinguish it with baking soda. It was a technique their 11-year-old son had taught them only weeks before, after his second MySafe: LA class. These classes are funded by the Assistance to Firefighters Grants, specifically the Fire Prevention & Safety Grant.
MySafe: LA was awarded in part to help fund a 3-part fire and life safety training. The training is intended to spread fire safety awareness, as well as to inspire kids to want to grow up and become firefighters. When younger students graduate from the training they receive Junior Fire Inspector I.D. cards.
Another key component to this FEMA funded program is installation of fire alarms. In just the first 6 months of the program, 5,000 new 10-year fire alarms were installed in houses. On average, 4 alarms were installed in each 3-bedroom home. More than half of inspected houses had no working alarms, and in those that did, the alarms were more than 10 years old and no longer reliable.
When the public officers are in homes to conduct inspections and install new 10-year smoke alarms, they also take time to teach any children in the home about basic fire safety steps, including evacuation. Public officers will get down on their hands and knees and practice the “Get low and go” drill with kids.
Programs such as these, help to significantly reduce fatalities and injuries caused by fire, especially in the wildfire prone areas of California.
For more information on Assistance to Firefighters Grants, visit the FEMA website.