The Kauai Fire Department said it held a blessing ceremony for its new Fire Safety and Educational Trailer Tuesday morning fronting the Historic County Building.
Fire Chief Robert Westerman and Deputy Chief John Blalock welcomed guests, including Senator Ron Kouchi, Representative Dee Morikawa and Council members Dickie Chang, Jay Furfaro, Nadine Nakamura and JoAnn Yukimura.
Following Kahu Jade Battad’s pule, Council Vice Chair Yukimura thanked the Kauai Fire Department for its dedication to fire prevention and educational outreach.
"On behalf of Chair Furfaro and the rest of the County Council, we want you to know that we appreciate the work that goes into expanding your safety and prevention programs," stated Vice Chair Yukimura. "Fire safety programs created one of the most successful messaging campaigns with teaching children to 'Stop, Drop, and Roll' and those efforts have continued to save lives. It’s very important work that you do and we thank you."
The mobile trailer will become a critical component of the Fire Prevention Bureau’s community outreach and fire safety and prevention program.
"This trailer will allow people to experience a mock fire in a safe and controlled environment," says Fire Prevention Bureau Captain Daryl Date. "It will teach them exactly what to do during a house fire -- from calling 911 and properly using a fire extinguisher, to knowing when and how to escape."
The inside of the trailer is modeled after a home, complete with a kitchen and child’s bedroom. Various parts of the "home" can ignite with digital flames and smoke, simulating an intense fire emergency that challenges trainees on how to properly respond.
The trailer is also equipped with a sprinkler room to demonstrate the simplicity and effectiveness of a home sprinkler system, and its ability buy occupants time to get out of the home safely.
Fire Chief Westerman recognized his firefighters for working diligently to obtain the grant that helped to purchase the trailer, stating that it took three attempts at applying for the grant before the application was approved.
The 30-foot mobile trailer was obtained through a Federal Emergency Management Agency program grant, which contributed 80 percent of the $130,000 total cost. It was procured through BullEx, a company that specializes in fire safety products and trainings.