8th Annual Wildfire & Disaster Preparedness Day In Wrightwood

By Nikki Garrett Metzger

(Wrightwood) – May 1-7, 2011 has been declared “Wildfire Awareness Week” in California by Governor Brown.  The reason is to remind residents of the dangers wildfires pose and to education them on how to prepare their properties.

San Bernardino County kicked off Wildfire Awareness Week in Wrightwood with the dedication of Medic Engine 14 at Fire Station #14. And will culminate the week with the 8th Annual Wildfire and Disaster Preparedness Day presented by the FireSafe Council this Saturday.

Chuck Carroll, Wrightwood Fire Safe Council President, explained, “The purpose of the event is to educate the public on how to prepare their property to be more wild fire resistant. We’ve done a lot of programs around Wrightwood informing people that they need to take care of their own property, make it defensive and fire safe.”

Carroll continued, “That’s why we have the pine needle and green waste event, to encourage people to clean their properties early and then offer them a quick way of disposal. It encourages a lot of people to do things they wouldn’t normally do.”

The event is packed with exhibits, speakers, workshops, and demonstrations, including discount fire extinguisher servicing and free fire extinguisher training, a rock climbing wall, free composting workshop, and firescape gardening.

The Community Emergency Response Team, or CERT, will also be on hand. “CERT demonstrations are dynamite. One of the things they show is how to open a door that has been tweaked or jammed in a disaster, like an earthquake. They physically show you how to do that. They demonstrate how to remove people if something has fallen on them. They offer suggestions on how to be more disaster prepared, to have sufficient water and food,” said Carroll.

Another fun event is the Dunk Tank. “It was a great event last year. Typically what we do is get the key people from the various government agencies to participate in it. This year one of our new rangers with Angeles National Forest, Bob Blount, volunteered to do it,” said Carroll.

A silent auction will be going on during the event as a fundraiser for the FireSafe Council.  Prizes include gift certificates for restaurants and bakeries, eight hour passes to Mtn High, jewelry, artwork, jackets, T-shirts, and a wide variety of other items.

Items for sale include disaster supplies: FDA approved 55 gallon water storage systems, fire extinguishers, fireman’s nozzles for your garden hose, and much more.

The 8th Annual Wildfire and Disaster Preparedness Day will take place right in the center of Wrightwood, at 1390 Hwy 2, from 10:00am-3:00pm.

For more information visit their website www.WrightwoodFSC.com or call 760-249-5248.

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