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Hannibal 7th graders get a lesson on fire prevention

Hannibal Middle School Firewise.jpg

Have you talked to your kids about what you should do in case of a fire?

It's an important conversation.

October serves as a reminder as National Fire Prevention month.

Hannibal students got a firsthand look at what could go wrong Wednesday.

Mariah Odom didn’t know what to expect when Hannibal Firefighters stopped by her school, Wednesday.

"It was hard to watch it was emotional but it made me really think about really what could happen if I did get in trouble with fire,” said Odom.

Hannibal Firefighters brought Firewise to Hannibal Middle School to an auditorium full of seventh graders.

"After that video, it really showed you that it’s not a toy and you really can't mess with it," said 7th grade student Cameron Nichols.

This fire prevention program is now in its fifth year.It teaches kids the importance of an escape plan at home.

"We have a fire extinguisher at our house but I’ve never really seen anyone demonstrate it," said 7th grader Katie Locke.

Officials say they want to focus on the other side of the fire. Mark Kempker with Hannibal Fire says he has seen kids with severe burns from playing with fire. Even basic chores like cooking or eating can lead to injury.

"You know these kids are starting to learn these skills, so they can see that they can get hurt," said Kempker.

Hot topics discussed at today’s assembly were cooking at home, the consequences of starting a fire and fire prevention.

Kempker says, "We teach them the safe way to cook in our eyes, not cook on stoves with oils, we teach them a simple thing is put gas in a gas lawnmower so they don't get burned, they let it get cooled down."
"We've never really learned what happens to you medically to you if you get burn so this really opened my eyes a bit more," says Locke.

Now, Mark Kemper says the program began because of problems with juvenile fire play and property damage.

Kemper says since beginning this prevention program, the department has seen a substantial drop in fire play, injuries and property damage.

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