New Fire Prevention Unit Provides Realistic Setting

By: Jordan Shefte Email
By: Jordan Shefte Email

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If a fire started in your home, would your child know what to do?

The Wichita Fire Department is trying to make sure your answer is yes.

As part of Fire Safety Week, the Wichita Fire Department unveiled its new Mobile Prevention Experience unit. It places kids inside a realistic setting for practice, where their burning questions can be answered.

Kids are told over and over again what to do in case of a fire but in the actual scenario, will they remember what they were taught?

The Wichita Fire Department now has a realistic way to find out. it's a scenario created by the new Mobile Prevention Experience. Fog smoke and a fire alarm place students in a realistic environment.

"As they see the room start to smoke, you can see their eyes starting to change because you see the worry come across their face," said Lt. Martin Gutierrez with the Fire Prevention Department. "That is something you just can't talk about, they've got to experience it themselves."

Firefighters stress the dangers of playing with lighters, not to place a dish towel near burners and keeping handles away from the edge of the stove.

"The unattended cooking fires that we have is our number one cause of fires here," Gutierrez said.

But the unit doesn't just provide practice for fires, it also prepares children for severe weather. A Smart Weather Package imitates a tornado coming through.

"it can be be a little scary because the volume of it tends to come, with the rattling and everything" Gutierrez said. "The blinds shake and everything else. It's awesome,"

The experience gives kids practice before it's too late.

The cost of the Mobile Prevention Experience was about ninety-thousand-dollars. It was paid for with the help of a grant.

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