GAHANNA LINCOLN SENIORS LEARN VITAL FIRE SKILLS FOR LIFE AFTER GRADUATION
GAHANNA, Ohio – With graduation just around the corner, Mifflin Township firefighters are doing their part to prepare Gahanna Lincoln High School seniors for life on their own. Graduating seniors participated in a series of activities including learning how to operate a fire extinguisher, how to escape from a burning building and protect themselves in an active shooter scenario, and watching reality fire video clips, all in an effort to learn vital fire safety and life-saving skills.
Mifflin Township’s Division of Fire hosted hundreds of Gahanna Lincoln High School students on Monday and Tuesday of this week at Station 131, 475 Rocky Fork Blvd. in Gahanna. Students rotated through fast-paced, hands-on learning stations. In one station ̶ the “bucket brigade” ̶ there was be a water-bucket relay race to teach seniors not only the historical way of fighting fires and how far fire service has advanced, but to set the rapid-response tone for the day. Another station was staffed by Gahanna Division of Police, whose representatives provided the ALICE training. ALICE stands for Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate.
"We want students to be able to anticipate potential emergency situations and to make decisions quickly," said Chief Kauser, Mifflin Township Fire Chief. "This will be the first time some of these young adults will be living on their own and we want to raise their awareness level of potential threat to their safety and how to respond that gives them the best opportunity for survival."
Mifflin Township Division of Fire has partnered with Gahanna Lincoln High School for more than 30 years as part of the school’s state and local government unit.
“These students are now young adults who will be making decisions that have adult consequences,” said Lieutenant Mark Hendricks. “The kids generally respond very well to the program. I tell them that in an emergency, it’s commonplace to fight, flee or freeze. We are giving them the tools to fight, and hopefully, to survive in an emergency.”
According to the Center for Campus Fire Safety, since January of 2000, 91 fatal fires have been documented that occurred on a college campus, in Greek housing or in off-campus housing within three miles of the campus, claiming a total of 128 victims. Of the 91 fires, 14 were intentionally set, claiming 22 victims, 38 were accidental, including cooking, candles, smoking or electrical, claiming 51 victims, and 39 of the fires were of undetermined cause. These fires claimed 55 victims.
Mifflin Township Fire Department also recognized Gahanna Trailer Service, which donated propane for use with the fire extinguisher trainer, on loan to Mifflin Township by Washington Township Fire Department. Additionally, Columbus State Community College provided materials for use with the bucket brigade.
The Mifflin Township Division of Fire serves approximately 36,800 residents in the city of Gahanna and 4,000 residents within the unincorporated township. The division operates from four strategically located fire stations, employing 80 full time firefighter/paramedics, six fire prevention and inspection officers and 24 9-1-1 dispatchers. Mifflin Township firefighters responded to more than 11,600 calls for emergency medical services (EMS) and structure fires in 2016, making it one of the most active and progressive fire divisions in the region.