School Fire Patrols Help Prevent Fires
The School Fire Patrol has been initiated in many schools as part of the extensive fire prevention activities of the Ohio Fire Safety Committee, Division of State Fire Marshal. This program has the hearty endorsement of Harry J. Callan, State Fire Marshal, as one of the best means of teaching the youngsters in the rudiments of fire safety, for it instills in them a sense of responsibility for their own and their fellow students’ welfare.
The patrol is set up in the grade schools with a student chief leading each school. He reports directly to the fire department, correlating the information of his junior officers and making personal inspections. In each grade from the fourth through the eighth, a captain and lieutenant assume active duties. The carrying of matches, fireworks, etc., is banned and enforcement is carried out. Fire prevention literature is distributed and instructions in fire safety given. The patrol in the high school is essentially the same, with emphasis being placed on means of egress and condition of exit doors.
The patrol assists in fire drills, helping crippled children out of the building, observing that all doors are closed after the class has left the room; emptying waste paper baskets after school, assisting as ushers during basket ball games or other indoor activities and other fire safety duties as they may arise.
Fire patrol members wear belts of red web to which is attached their official badge. These belts and badges are usually furnished by service clubs or the Chambers of Commerce in the community as a public service.
The Lancaster, Ohio, Fire Department was the first to sponsor this project and has one of the most active patrols in the state, having some 166 members in the schools throughout the city.
These pupils do not combat or attend fires, but are used as a preventive body. All schools in Ohio are being urged to foster similar groups.