Educational and entertaining: Fire District 9 holds annual Demo Day for hundreds

Its an annual tradition at Fire District 9, Demo Day as its called for the awe-inspiring firefighting demonstrations put on throughout the day.

“All the district personnel enjoy putting it on,” said Division Chief Nathan Jeffries.

He says its an opportunity to connect with their community, teach kids about fire safety and put on a little bit of a show while doing it.

“We can look pretty scary when we are all geared up, and we don’t want the kids to be scared of that,” he said, in explaining why getting kids familiar with first responders is important in non-emergency situations.

Fire lept high into the air as firefighters did mock battle with a propane tank fire, exhibiting how they angle their hoses and move in synchronization to safely put it out.

They then demonstrated how an automobile extrication might go, cutting into the doors, removing the roof, and pinching the front of the car forward to release pressure on the dummy victim inside.

A cooking oil fire proved one of the most informative for watchers young and old.

“What we absolutely don’t want you to do is to pick up the pan of oil and take it outside,” Jeffries said, “you will be burned seriously and likely set your house on fire.”

Instead he says the best way forward is to find a lid or cookie sheet and cover the flaming container, starving the fire of oxygen. Then you should turn off the heat and call 911 just in case.

One of the final scenarios, was showing how fast fires can spread in a room, a small start blew up into a flaming inferno within minutes.

“Its why we recommend smoke detectors on every level of the house and remind people to check the batteries twice a year,” he said.

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