Welcome to Fire Safety Week! We’re going to start off our week with a fire hall tour.
When I was in elementary school I used to pass by the #4 Fire Hall 4 times a day going and returning from school. Recently a big new hall has been built nearby to replace it and we were able to have a visit while back home visiting my family last year. Anyone can arrange for a visit, but you must call the main switchboard and give at least two weeks’ notice. Regina has a firefighter’s museum; I took my nephew before I moved away – they were just beginning with their collections then. This visit they were renovating so it wasn’t open, but we’ll be sure to visit on another trip.
We walked over to at our pre-arranged time and they had the engines out for us.
Please forgive me as I didn’t catch the names of these brave men and as they move from station to station I wasn’t able to get the information after we’d left. If you know who they are, please let me know and I’ll amend this post. For our purposes here, I’ll refer to them as Mr. F and Mr M.
Mr. F unrolled a hose and showed Tristan and Kallista how it worked. He offered it to Tristan to try it (with some help as the force behind is very powerful), but Tristan was much too shy to try it out.
Next it was time to move over to the big engines. Mr. F. showed us how they get dressed in their uniforms and gear. Tristan and Kallista weren’t quite sure what to make of it!
Mr. F. was very patient with the children, though I’m sure it must have been a little more trying to keep things going with children who were too shy to interact in comparison to school visits when kids are all over the place and asking questions overtop of each other!
We had a look up in the cab of the engine and saw where the Firemen sit during their call-outs. It’s quite comfy, but I’m not sure it would feel the same with all the heavy gear on! One thing that has changed since my younger years is that they no longer ride standing on the back of the trucks due to health and safety reasons. I really loved watching the big rigs scream past at lightening speed on their way to a fire but yet the men on the back of the truck would always wave and give us children a smile to saving others. True life Superheroes!
Mr. M. showed us the Jaws of Life and we explained to Tristan and Kallista how they were used like a giant pair of scissors to cut cars to rescue the people stuck inside.
This ceiling hook was my nephew’s favourite piece of equipment, and he always asked to see it! So although he didn’t make it home this trip as he was in the middle of exams, we carried on the tradition.
As the children weren’t asking questions, I thought I would try to ask an easy one. The firetrucks in Northern Ireland don’t seem as large as the North American fleets so I was curious how big they actually were. Mr. F. and Mr. M. didn’t know, but to our amazement (and My Mom’s embarrassment) they brought out a measuring tape and measured them up just for us!
One highlight of the tour was when Mr. M. radioed in to central and arranged for them to set off the #4 alarm. This was VERY loud and would wake anyone, even Tristan’s Daddy or Papa!
The children received some stickers featuring Sparky the Safety Dog so they could use them on the calendar when our smoke alarm is tested. Kallista dropped hers when we were on the way to see some ice hockey and Nana saved the day by walking back and finding them! Thanks, Nana!
On our way home we were able to show Tristan and Kallista the fire hydrants (where we live they are underground so you don’t see them) and explain how they work.
I think we can say that we all learned something on this day, and it will be a special memory of our trip to visit Nana and Papa.
Have you visited a fire station? What was your favourite part?
Other educational excursions we’ve done to see community helpers:
Or see our Fall activities page for more autumn fun.