Exchange Club hears about fire safety

Published 9:50 pm Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Firefighter Danny Manley spoke to Picayune’s Exchange Club about the importance of fire safety during the club’s Wednesday luncheon.

Manley covered a few fire safety practices such as testing smoke detector batteries, keeping fire extinguishers on hand and keeping candles away from curtains.

Smoke detector battery checks are sometimes neglected by homeowners so Manley suggests checking the batteries during a regular time of year, such as the holidays. While smoke detectors are sometimes in or near kitchens, Manley suggests a different location.

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“The general rule is right outside your bedrooms,” Manley said. “When you’re asleep is when you really need to hear them.”

Fire extinguishers can help prevent the need to call the fire department out in the instance of a fire. If the correct method is used to extinguish a fire then potential damage can be avoided.

“A lot of times water can make the situation worse,” Manley said.

In the instance of a grease fire, water will only fuel the flames, however using a chemical fire extinguisher will effectively put out the fire. When using a fire extinguisher Manley suggests using the acronym, PASS, which stands for pull pin, aim, squeeze and sweep.

Fire extinguishers usually need only minimal maintenance since a gauge on the extinguisher will alert the owner if maintenance or recharging is required. It is not necessary to discharge a fire extinguisher to check if it is in working order, Manley said.

Preventing candles and curtains from mixing also can save a call to the fire department. The majority of the fires the department responds to involve candles setting curtains on fire, Manley said.

The Exchange Club has programs such selecting six students as Students of the Month based on their school participation and academic achievement, a food drive to gather food for Manna Ministries and collecting items to send to soldiers overseas, said Joey Temples. Soon a number of soldiers will receive bottles of shampoo, magazines and items, he said.