Summer safety program covered a lot of ground

This summer’s Emergency Awareness Program (EAP) has been deemed a success, but the duo who delivered it say there is room to make it even better.

This summer’s Emergency Awareness Program (EAP) has been deemed a success, but the duo who delivered it say there is room to make it even better.

The program began on May 16 and ran until August 19, co-ordinated and led by two university students, Stacie Reis and Kylee Brown.

They gave tours of the Kitimat fire department, safety presentations, home assessments, and advice on emergency preparedness.

The program was directed at people of all ages within the community with the intent of providing information on fire safety and prevention.

Under the heading of emergency preparedness, it covered wildfires, floods, and earthquakes.

Tours of the fire department focused on teaching children – mainly 3- to 6- year-olds – about fire safety while giving a guided tour of all the department’s highlights.

A total of 14 tours took place, 11 of which were public tours and the remaining three were private tours requested by community members for families or friends.

Each child who toured the department received a snack and a small goodie-bag which usually consisted of a colouring book, crayons, fire hat, and/or lollipop.

Presentations on fire safety and prevention were given to children throughout kindergarten to grade seven at each elementary school. These were more in-depth than the tours and also promoted the ‘home safety assessment’ aspect of the program.

In total, there were 25 presentations given to a grand total of 460 children.

At the end of each class presentation letters were handed out with home assessment forms on the back.  The class from each school which returned the most forms won a pizza party in which we provided two slices of pizza, a juicebox, and a rice crispy treat.

Presentations were also given to different clubs and organizations within the community with varying messages.

For example, to the residents at Delta King Place we gave an ‘Older & Wiser’ presentation regarding ten safety tips for seniors, including but not limited to fire safety.

A presentation on outdoor campfire safety was given to a Riverlodge summer program. Another very successful presentation was given in our Cablecar ‘block party’ in which Tim and Marcy Rice opened their home to us and allowed us to invite the entire neighbourhood  to a presentation on yard maintenance for fire prevention.

Being in a heavily wooded area, the Cablecar residents received a FireSmart Manual and instruction on how to prevent property loss in case of wildfires.

When it came to home assessments, this year the program focused on the Kildala area – with the exception of a few home safety assessments and presentations performed in surrounding areas.

The main goal of the home safety assessments was to test each smoke alarm in the home.  If the smoke alarm(s) were not in working condition, a new smoke alarm or batteries were provided to correct the malfunctioning alarm.

New smoke alarms were also provided if the working smoke alarms were more than ten years old.

Carbon monoxide detectors and fire extinguishers were also checked to ensure they were in working condition.

Fire safety and prevention information was presented during each assessment, emphasizing the importance of having a home escape plan. Brochures and pamphlets regarding fire safety, prevention, and emergency preparedness were also left for the home occupants.

Approximately 503 Kildala homes were canvassed including both trailer parks and 15 streets. Due to time constraints, approximately 10 streets were not canvassed.

A total of 54 homes have been assessed, 40 of which were in the Kildala neighbourhood. The program distributed 40 smoke alarms and 52 batteries.

This year the EAP collaborated with the two pizza establishments it town to put on the “It’s On Us” Safety Pizza promotion.

The event set a time frame in which pizzas ordered would be delivered in the fire truck. Each home that had pizza delivered by the fire department had their smoke alarms tested, and if it worked, they were given their pizza for free.

If not, new alarms and batteries were provided.

This event provided great public relations as well as promoted safety.

Mike Stekelenburg, volunteer for the Kitimat Emergency Program (KEP), was kind enough to give us training on tsunami, earthquake and flood plans for the town of Kitimat.

We were also given much support and information by Bob McLeod, KEP co-ordinator, on 72 hour kits. Homeowners showed great interest in these kits and how to go about creating one.

We were also given training on “Bear Aware” and what to do if encountering a bear during our canvassing.

Promotional efforts included placemats with colouring pages being distributed to local restaurants throughout town with our programs information as well as posters.

A table was set up and manned at Overwaitea, passing out pamphlets, draw prizes, and helium balloons, a flier was sent in the tax notices mailed out by the city and the Northern Sentinel ran a story regarding our program and its benefits.

Some other fun events were held in the community in which the EAP participated and provided activities including the Child Care Resource & Referral department’s ‘Picnic in the Park’ where a table was set up with a draw and giveaways as well as a truck brought down for fun tours.

And during Riverlodge’s ‘Summer Wind-Up’ event a special fire safety training house was brought down to practise hose shooting drills.

Many aspects of the program were a significant success.  The tours were always an enjoyable part of the program.  The kids always enjoyed seeing various aspects of the firehall and meeting real firefighters.

The most noted highlights for almost every child were seeing a firefighter slide down the pole, eating the snack, or playing the games that the EAP team hosted.

We learned a lot from the first few home assessments which we were able to apply to the following assessments.  Firstly, some changes will be made to improve the form used during the assessments

A positive improvement would be to have the inspection form read “Is there an escape plan present in the home?” We would also like to provide more time to implementing a plan with families that do not have one in place, or even practising one with families if members are present.


The two “It’s On Us” Pizza Promos received very positive feed back and it is very much hoped to continue this event in future.



Just Posted

Outside the Kitimat RCMP police station, Diversity Morgan’s family and Kitimat RCMP come together for a pride flag-raising ceremony. (Jacob Lubberts photo)
Kitimat RCMP host pride flag ceremony in memory of Diversity Morgan

“We’re gathered here in solidarity for anyone who’s ever experienced prejudice or discrimination”

(Haisla First Nation logo)
Haisla Nation host walk for strength and series of virtual sessions for Indigenous History Month

The purpose of the walk is to bring Haisla Nation members together and show their collective support

The District of Kitimat will be awarding business owners with a store front up to $5,000 to cover up to 50 per cent of exterior renovations. (Norhtern Development logo)
The District of Kitimat is awarding $5,000 to storefront owners for exterior renovations

The district has set aside $20,000 this year and non-profits are also eligible

Ron getting loose and sipping a glass of the family’s favourite greek amber spirit, Metaxa. (Photo supplied)
In Our Valley: Ron Lechner

Retired part-time singer and Rio Tinto lifer: Ron Lechner

Map of the road work that will be completed this summer. The streets highlighted in red are what the district planned on completing before additional funding, and the streets highlighted in orange is the road works that will be done with the additional funding. (District of Kitimat photo)
$1.1 million allocated for road work this year in Kitimat

Kitimat council has added $470,000 for more work by deferring four other projects.

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed teen facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

A North Vancouver man was arrested Friday and three police officers were injured after a 10-person broke out at English Bay on June 19, 2021. (Youtube/Screen grab)
Man arrested, 3 police injured during 10-person brawl at Vancouver beach

The arrest was captured on video by bystanders, many of whom heckled the officers as they struggled with the handcuffed man

Patrick O’Brien, a 75-year-old fisherman, went missing near Port Angeles Thursday evening. (Courtesy of U.S. Coast Guard)
Search for lost fisherman near Victoria suspended, U.S. Coast Guard says

The 75-year-old man was reported missing Thursday evening

Most Read