Poland's Western Reserve Joint Fire District received special honors Monday morning for its education program. The were presented a plaque for bringing awareness of fire safety to the children of the community for the past five years through a variety of programs. Fire Chief David "Chip" Comstock said it is a program that will be continued.
"We will again be working with the National Fire Safety Council in a continuing effort to reduce the staggering loss due to fire and burns," the chief said. "We are now organizing our annual Fire Safety and Burn Prevention Education Program geared towards the children in the community."
The program begins each summer when the department mails out program sponsor requests to area businesses asking for a donation. The donations are used to purchase workbooks for first- and second-graders that are used in the Poland program.
Photo by J.T. Whitehouse, Town Crier
Western Reserve Joint Fire District Chief David “Chip” Comstock and Fire Safety educator Bill O’Hara were joined by Clyde “Wayne” Bulgar, fire safety coordinator with the National Fire Safety Council, on Monday for the presentation of a plaque honoring the district’s dedication to the children of the community over the past five years.
"The business will get their name printed on the back of the books as the sponsor," said Bill O'Hara, WRJFD Fire Safety educator. "We pass the books out during October, which is Fire Safety Month."
O'Hara bases his fire safety lessons on the books as he visits Poland elementary schools. The books teach things such as how safely get out of a burning building and what to do when a fire is detected. The idea is to teach the kids at an early age how to be prepared when a fire strikes. The books are activity books and O'Hara coordinates his hands-on lessons with them.
"I've been doing this for the past five years in Poland schools," he said.
That fact brought NFSC fire safety coordinator Clyde "Wayne" Bulger to the Station 91 on Monday to hand deliver a plaque that commended the department's efforts in educating the children.
Comstock said he was pleased with the work O'Hara has done in the past five years and he looks forward to a continued effort as the department begins soliciting for funds to provide the workbooks for this coming October. He did say that his department is the only one soliciting for this program.
"This is the only fire safety and burn prevention education program that our department endorses and sponsors," he said. " Should any other person or persons call upon you for any other program, please contact the WRJFD immediately."