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October 3, 2012

Fraser paid-on-call firefighters host open house

By Nico Rubello
C & G Staff Writer

» click to enlarge «
A registered nurse from the University of Michigan Survival Flight helicopter chats with children. People could to check out the helicopter after it landed in a field at the Fraser paid-on-call firefighters’ open house on Sept. 30.

FRASER — Fraser’s paid-on-call firefighters opened their doors to the public on Sept. 30 during their annual open house.

The four-hour event, held at the Fraser Department of Public Safety at 33000 Garfield, attracted many people, most with kids in tow for the up-close-and-personal look at firefighter equipment and techniques.

Kids’ events included a candy handout and hands-on fire hose demonstrations. Meanwhile, everyone was able to enjoy a live demonstration about how firefighters extricate someone from a car after an accident.

There was also a well-received visit from a newer University of Michigan Survival Flight helicopter, which landed in a field neighboring the DPS after making the 20-minute flight from Ann Arbor. A pilot and two registered nurses handed out stickers to children and answered questions from the crowd that gathered around to get a glimpse inside.

“This is us giving back to the community for them supporting us,” said Mike Carnagie, president of the Fraser paid-on-call firefighters association. “It’s just a good tradition.”

The open house educates people about what resources and equipment Fraser firefighters have available to them, he added. Besides police and fire services, the city provides its own 911 dispatch and EMS-Rescue services, which includes an ambulance and personnel trained to provide advanced life support.

Carnagie said he started the open house 24 years ago after seeing other cities’ fire departments doing it. The event has grown since then, always taking place around Fire Prevention Week in early October.

Hundreds of hot dogs and plenty of popcorn, pretzels and cookies were handed out to people free of charge.

The Fraser First Booster Club also was on-site selling pumpkins to benefit the nonprofit group’s initiative to equip McKinley Park to accommodate people with and without physical challenges.

Fraser’s new ambulance also was on display inside the Department of Public Safety’s firehouse garage.

The new ambulance, painted red to match the city’s fire truck, was purchased for about $150,000 using forfeited funds from individuals charged with illegal gambling, so no tax dollars were used, said Fraser DPS Lt. Dan Kolke.

Kolke said DPS expected to swap out the city’s 10-year-old ambulance for the new
one soon.

“We really appreciate what the (paid-on-call firefighters) do,” he added. “All these guys are here (at the open house) on their own time, and it is very successful every year.”

 

You can reach C & G Staff Writer Nico Rubello at nrubello@candgnews.com or at (586)279-1118.