Next week is Fire Prevention Week, and this year’s message is “Not Every Hero Wears A Cape, Plan and Practice Your Escape”.

Deputy Fire Chief Richard Piché with Grand Forks Fire Rescue says Fire Prevention Week commemorates the Great Chicago Fire of 1871:

“It was kind of decided way back then, well on the 40th anniversary, that there were a lot of things that could have prevented from that great fire. So the National Fire Prevention Association which is a sponsor of Fire Prevention Week has decided that during the week when that fire was they’re going to promote fire prevention and public education….”

He says it’s important you practice your plan:

“By practicing this and knowing two ways out of every room, and practicing…. that the door that you typically go in and out of your home might not be available at that particular time, so what are your options?…. so what I like to do or stress to parents is make a game out of it!”

Piché adds that practice helps reduce panic, and should be done at least twice a year with your family, or even at a friends’ house. He says it’s normal for GFFR to spend days educating local schools or hosting open houses during this time of year, and he’ll be spending time in schools next week. Piché says your escape plan should include a meeting area outside, which during an emergency you should use to call emergency services from.