The Prince George’s County Fire Department and The Prince George’s Sentinel are teaming up to ask county residents to install smoke alarms in their homes in recognition of Fire Prevention Week. This year the fire department will recognize Fire Prevention Week from Oct. 4 through 10, with a theme of “Hear the beep where you […]
The Prince George’s County Fire Department and The Prince George’s Sentinel are teaming up to ask county residents to install smoke alarms in their homes in recognition of Fire Prevention Week.
This year the fire department will recognize Fire Prevention Week from Oct. 4 through 10, with a theme of “Hear the beep where you sleep.”
Fire Prevention Week was established to commemorate the Great Chicago Fire, a notorious blaze that killed more than 250 people, left 100,000 homeless, destroyed more than 17,400 structures, and burned more than 2,000 acres on Oct. 8 and 9 in 1871. Forty years after the Great Chicago Fire, the Fire Marshals Association of North America (today known as the International Fire Marshals Association), decided that the anniversary should be used as an occasion to raise awareness about the importance of fire prevention.
“It’s required in Prince George’s County to have a smoke alarm on each floor of your house, as well as in the basement and attic area,” said Mark Brady, spokesman for the Prince George’s County Fire Department. “If a resident of Prince George’s County is in need a smoke alarm, the county will provide a free one.”
According to the United States Fire Administration, each year there are an estimated 405,000 fires in residential structures, which cause nearly 3,600 fatalities, 18,600 injuries, and $4.7 billion in property loss.
According to the fire department, there have been several fires this year in Prince George’s County where smoke alarms have saved residents’ lives.
“This year there has been 24 house fires where county residents have been saved by smoke alarms,” said Brady. “Last year in 2014, there were 36 house fires where smoke alarms alerted residents of a fire and they were able to get out safely.”
To help spread the word regarding smoke alarms, The Sentinel and the fire department will sponsor a poster contest for elementary school students in Prince George’s County. Students may design a poster depicting how fire alarms save lives, or demonstrate an example of a fire safety plan for their home and where to place smoke detectors.
Students may submit their contest entries at their local fire house or by emailing The Sentinel at firstname.lastname@example.org between Sept. 30 and Oct. 10. The winner will have their photo in the paper and will receive a one-year membership at the First Tee Program.
The First Tee of Prince George’s County offers golf programs and instruction, which focus on developing life skills using the game as its vehicle. The First Tee of Prince George’s Chapter was established in 2001 and is operated by the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC) and the Department of Parks and Recreation. This award is provided courtesy of the Chapter at the Paint Branch Golf Complex in College Park.
Posters will be judged by Prince George’s County Fire Department officials and The Sentinel.
Several Prince George’s County Volunteer Fire Departments will be holding fire prevention open-house programs. The Branchville Volunteer Fire Department at 4905 Branchville Road in College Park will host theirs on Oct. 11 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Free fire trucks rides and other actives will take place.