St. Clair Shores Fire Department open house returns Oct. 10

By: Kristyne E. Demske | St. Clair Shores Sentinel | Published September 22, 2021

 Firefighter medic Robert Cook helps 2-year-old Luke Griffin, of St. Clair Shores, into firefighting gear during the 2019 St. Clair Shores Fire Department Open House. This year’s event is Oct. 10.

Firefighter medic Robert Cook helps 2-year-old Luke Griffin, of St. Clair Shores, into firefighting gear during the 2019 St. Clair Shores Fire Department Open House. This year’s event is Oct. 10.

File photo by Donna Agusti

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ST. CLAIR SHORES — What’s the best way to safely get out of a burning building? How do firefighters rescue occupants trapped in vehicles? How much does a firefighter’s equipment weigh?

These questions and more will be answered at the St. Clair Shores Fire Department Open House, which kicks off Fire Prevention Week in October.

“We missed last year, like everybody else, so we’re going to have a nice return to things,” said St. Clair Shores Firefighter Paramedic Scott Campbell. “With the year we missed, it would have been nice to do something big, but we’re finding it’s easier to settle back into normal.”

The St. Clair Shores Fire Department Open House will be held from noon to 3 p.m. Oct. 10 at Central Fire Station, 26700 Harper Ave. As in years past, there will be car-cutting demonstrations, cider and doughnuts, and fire department equipment on display with firefighters on hand to answer questions and interact with the public. Everything is free courtesy of Firefighters Local 1744.

Visitors can also see Sparky the fire dog, visit the Smokehouse and receive giveaways, including hats and stickers for children.

Campbell said it will be a great opportunity for the public to come meet firefighters who have joined the department over the past two years.

“It’s a first opportunity for a lot of them to interact with the citizens — something they haven’t been able to do as a group since they’ve been hired,” he said. “We’re hoping this is a return to the first of many events ... that we enjoy doing.”

Although the Open House will be as normal as possible, Campbell said, “the big difference this year is COVID is very real.

“We are very aware of the hazards.”

Some events will be moved outside, and displays will be spaced farther apart to encourage social distancing. There is also no reason to rush to the fire station right at noon for a chance at cider and doughnuts; Campbell said they will be spreading the goodies throughout the day.

“We don’t want people to feel they have to get there right on time to enjoy the experience,” he said. While masks are not required, “we recommend anybody with a compromised immune system to still mask up and social distance while they enjoy the event.”

The car-cutting demonstration is one of the most popular events of the open house, and children always enjoy the opportunity to interact with firefighters. The Fire Prevention Department doesn’t have the opportunity to visit children in the schools because of COVID, so Campbell said this is a great way for kids to get exposed to safety information and the work firefighters do for the community.

“A lot of us, that’s how we got our interest in it (fighting fires), is going to open houses, meeting the firemen,” Campbell said. “We look forward to them coming, too.”

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