KFD, Red Cross to hold event Saturday

KFD, Red Cross to hold event Saturday

American Red Cross volunteers Carol Schwarzenbach and Jonathan Fehr went door-to-door in North Carolina during a Sound the Alarm event. Teams of Red Cross volunteers fan out into local neighborhoods, offering to install free smoke alarms in any home that needs them. As part of the installation, they also teach families about fire prevention and help them design escape plans so they can practice how to get out of the building quickly in the event of a fire. Photo by Adam Jennings / American Red Cross.

The Kinston Department of Fire and Rescue is teaming up with the American Red Cross to get the word out about fire safety in the city.

On Saturday, there will be a “Sound The Alarm” event from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. During the event, teams of volunteers will go door-to-door installing free smoke alarms and providing home fire safety education to families.

“In Eastern North Carolina alone, The Red Cross responds to five house fires every day,” Red Cross Regional Communication Officer Brittany Jennings said. “We’re on a mission across the country to reduce home fires and injuries. (In this event), we’ll have dozens of volunteers and split up into teams of three or four, partnering with local departments to provide free smoke alarms, fire education and escape training.”

New KFD Fire Chief Damien Locklear said events like these are what he wants to incorporate in the city.

“Coming in, I wanted to show that the community is very important to me, and we want to have a partnership like this on at least a biannual basis,” Locklear said. “(On Saturday) we’ll identify an area in the city and keep a record of it, knocking on doors and asking citizens if we can come in to explain the importance of smoke detectors. We’ll ask to look at detectors in the place and replace them if they’re past the 10-year timeframe or provide batteries if citizens need them.

“This safety device helps prevent the loss of life and hopefully we can also get the word out about our fire safety program. We’ve been doing work on the back end and partnered up with Lowe’s to get smoke detectors to have something in place to provide a service. We’re shooting for a minimum of 50 installations (Saturday) and hope to do 100 or more.”

For more information, contact the KFD at 252-939-3222.

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