Crossroads Charter Academy students learn fire safety

LEARNING: Big Rapids Department of Public Safety firefighter Sean Wethington explains to students from Erica Sinicropi and Alycia Nixon's kindergarten class at Crossroads Charter Academy about the different devices on the fire truck. (Pioneer photo/Lonnie Allen)

LEARNING: Big Rapids Department of Public Safety firefighter Sean Wethington explains to students from Erica Sinicropi and Alycia Nixon’s kindergarten class at Crossroads Charter Academy about the different devices on the fire truck. (Pioneer photo/Lonnie Allen)

BIG RAPIDS — The loud beep of smoke detectors could be heard ringing throughout the auditorium at Crossroads Charter Academy as wide-eyed students listened to a presentation on fire prevention and safety on Wednesday.

“This is the most important fire-safety device you can have in your home,” said DPS firefighter Sean Wethington to a group of K-2 students. “When you go home tonight, tell your parents to make your smoke detector beep. If it doesn’t beep change the batteries.”

The visit to CCA was part of Fire Prevention Month. The DPS fire department offers its own fire safety program to area schools throughout the month of October.

Firefighters will visit Stepping Stones Learning Center, Big Rapids Head Start, St. Peter’s and St. Mary’s schools, as well as Brookside, Eastwood and Riverview elementary schools.

“We will visit close to 1,500 students this month,” Wethington said. “The main point is to teach the students the importance of having a plan when there is a fire.”

After watching a brief video on staying low on the floor and crawling out of a house filled with smoke, Wethington took student volunteers from the audience to demonstrate different techniques about fire safety to enforce the message of the video.

Wethington emphasized the importance of getting out and staying out once a child exits a burning house.

“Don’t go back inside for any reason,” Wethington said. “We cannot go to the store and get another you.”

Erica Sinicropi’s and Alycia Nixon’s kindergarten class got a unique hands-on look at one of the firetrucks after the assembly. Wethington explained many of the devices on the truck to the students, who were anxious to climb inside and take a look around.

“We have been talking about fire safety to the children and this morning we made our firefighter head bands to wear in honor of our visitor,” Sinicropi said. “We have a list of activities we will do today, which will expand on what the students learned this morning.”

Wethington explained to the kindergartners about the importance of “stop, drop and roll” and “don’t hide, get outside.” He also asked them to remember two ways out of their homes in case of a fire.

“We are going to read through some of our story books that teach these techniques and other fire safety tips,” Sinicropi said. “The students are excited to see inside the fire truck and ask questions about being a firefighter.”

 

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Posted by Lonnie Allen

Lonnie is the Pioneer's city/county reporter. He also coordinates the Gardens and Growers page. He can be reached by phone at (231) 592-8328 or by e-mail at lallen@pioneergroup.com.

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