Open house set for Sunday
Only 3 percent to 5 percent of parents install a child safety seat correctly.
That means up 97 percent inadvertently risk their child’s life, said Carson City Fire Department Battalion Chief Stacey Giomi
“It’s a scenario where you buy a car seat and you don’t think there ‘s anything to putting it into your car, but there is,” Giomi said.
The fire department will kick-off a new program of child safety seat inspections in conjunction with National Fire Prevention Week. The week begins Oct. 3 but starts at fire station No. 1 with an open house Sunday.
The child safety seat inspections are part of program called KidSafe, which provide useful safety tips for families on how to keep their children safe, Giomi said.
The fire department sent three department members to learn inspection techniques. The three were certified by the National Institute for Traffic Safety Administration and can inspect any kind of child safety seat. Inspectors can tell parents if a seat is on a recall list, meets national safety standards and will teach families to correctly install the seats. The department hopes to have the inspections three times a year.
Kids can bring bicycles to the open house for a bicycle rodeo. The fire department does the rodeo about three times a year to teach kids how to safely ride bikes and to abide road rules. Kids complete an obstacle course while learning safety techniques. When they’re finished they receive a certificate of completion. Department members will also inspect bicycles and helmets to make sure they’re safe.
“I think it’s an opportunity for parents to see if their kids understand all the components of riding their bike,” Giomi said. “We assume they know what laws they’re supposed to obey. This offers a fun way to ride their bikes and learn traffic laws.”
Firefighters will be giving free tours of the fire station and equipment including a 100-foot aerial ladder. Visitors won’t be able to ride in a fire truck, but they can climb through one, Giomi said. There will also be fire extinguisher demonstrations and discussions on general home fire safety.
Local children have drawn posters for Fire Prevention Week and the department will use the open house to compliment their yearly programs to promote fire safety.
“We try to point out to people that they have to take responsibility for fire safety in their homes,” Giomi said. “The United States (compared to other developed nations) loses the most dollars annually of things lost to fire. It’s not a statistic to be proud of. Most of us have the general idea that things like that can’t happen to me. Things like that can happen to you.”