The La Porte Fire Department hosted their annual open house, raising awareness to communities about fire safety while having some fun at the same time. On this beautiful Saturday, community fun began with fire station tours, extrication demonstrations, firetruck ladder tours overlooking the city, and a survival life house.
The La Porte Fire Department opened their doors to community members to teach them not only about fire safety, but what firefighters do on a typical day. Since the historical anniversary of the Great Chicago Fire, fire awareness week became a great way to teach the community about fire safety and prevention.
Assistant Fire Chief AC Pressler explained how significant these events are to teach kids and inspire them to be stay safe and be smart about fire safety.
“The event promotes kids to be the best they can,” Pressler described. “Heroes are a lot closer than you think, like your dad and your mom.”
Every year the La Porte Fire Department brings in more and moree people to the event. Not only was the event educational, but it was also fun for the whole family. Pressler described how the community grew with the event over the years.
“It is neat to see how we have evolved from something small to a big event that takes a lot of planning,” Pressler recalled. “It used to be that our on-duty guys would handle it and it got to the point where it was so big that we actually had to bring in off duty guys!”
Fire safety and prevention became a tradition as it was passed down from generation to generation. The little kids that were at the event years ago are now back teaching a new generation.
“We are starting to get people that have been through here in middle school,” Pressler explained. “Now they are coming back, married with little kids.”
Community members also learned about the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning. The Lindsey O’Brien Kesling Wishing Tree Foundation (LOK) increased awareness of this situation. In 2002 Lindsey O’Brien passed away from carbon monoxide poisoning. Simson O’Brien, the Communications Director of LOK, described LOK’s mission to raise more awareness about the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning.
“Indiana and Arizona are the only two states in the country that do not have regulatory laws on carbon monoxide installations. It has been LOK’s mission to get these laws passed,” O’Brien stated. “La Porte was the first community in the state to get it passed.”
Battalion Chief Robert Sabie described how the open house was also a great opportunity for people to come in to get their questions answered.
“People have questions that they may not get a chance to ask us," he explained. "We want to help them out.”
Sabie described how a typical day at the La Porte Fire Department can be filled with different things you might not expect.
“We train almost every day on something, you have to keep up on everything,” Sabie said. “Our department is up 2,100 calls for the year!”
The La Porte Fire Department and LOK Foundation did a fantastic job raising awareness to community members in a fun and educational way. As the new generation of kids learn and grow from previous generations, one can understand the importance of a wonderful event like this. Heroes can be found closer than we think. For many kids that Saturday, they found their heroes at the La Porte Fire Department.