Volunteer firefighters all around the country will be going into elementary schools to teach the younger students to "Stay Low and Go!"
Tragically, children under the age of five are twice as likely to perish in house fires than older children or adults Instinctively, children try to hide from the smoke and flames under their beds or in their closets.
The Cherokee Fire Department will also be conducting a drill on Wednesday when fire trucks will be driven around Cherokee at 6 p.m. for operation EDITH. Operation EDITH stands for "Exit Drill In The Home" and encourages children and their parents to prepare a home exit plan in the event of a fire. Parents and children should check all smoke detectors inside the home and get familiar with the way they sound. then plan a route of escape. Practice dropping to your hands and knees and get under the smoke. Remember the saying - "Stay Low and Go" - and get out of the house.
If bedrooms are located on a second floor, families should consider the purchase of escape ladders for safe exits from a second story window. The family should also establish a safe meeting place outside and away form the home.
This can be at the mailbox or a tree in the family's yard. Once out, everyone should stay at the meeting place until every family member is accounted for. No one should go back inside the house or leave the agreed meeting place. These exit drills should be practiced at least twice a year so children (and adults) get comfortable with the plan.
By practicing home exit drills, you can greatly increase the chances of every member of your household escaping safely. Of course, no one likes to think about their house catching on fire. It's scary at any age. Fires are deadly, but they don't have to be. Be prepared and have a plan.