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Grand Forks AFB observes Fire Prevention Week

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Elora J. McCutcheon
  • 319th Reconnaissance Wing Public Affairs

National Fire Prevention Week began here Friday, Oct. 2, 2020 at 3:30 p.m., when Col. Timothy Curry, 319th Reconnaissance Wing vice commander, signed the FPW proclamation.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, on average, a fire department in the United States responds to a fire somewhere in the nation every 24 seconds.

The 319th Civil Engineer Fire Department here responded to 401 fire-related emergencies on base and in the local neighboring communities within the last two years, according to Brian Williams, fire inspector with the 319 CES.

“It’s a good thing that number is so low compared to other highly-populated areas,” Williams said. “We want those numbers to stay low, but it’s imperative for our team to continue training as if they weren’t.”

The 319 CES Fire Department, trained and equipped to protect and rescue base residents and local community members, is taking advantage of National Fire Prevention Week this year to promote its slogan: “Serve up Fire Safety in the Kitchen!”

“A lot of fire-related accidents can be easily prevented,” Williams said. “Our goal for the fire department is to provide fire prevention with safety-focused public education campaigns. The most effective way to handle an emergency is to prevent it from happening in the first place, and that starts with educating the public.”

This year’s campaign focuses on fire safety in the kitchen because according to the NFPA, cooking is the No.1 cause of home fires and home fire injuries. According to their website,, cooking is the leading cause of fires in the kitchen.

Safety tips to correctly cook with caution include: avoiding using the stovetop when sleepy or intoxicated, staying in the kitchen while you are frying, boiling, grilling or broiling; checking food regularly; staying in the home when baking or roasting, using a timer; and keeping anything flammable away from the stovetop.

“If you have any doubt about fighting a small fire, call 9-1-1 and get out,” Williams said. “If you live on base, be sure to tell the 9-1-1 operator so they can correctly forward you.”

The Grand Forks NFPW campaign includes the following events:

4 Oct.   1:00 – 2:30 p.m.            Fire truck parade through base housing

5 Oct.   9:00 – 9:30 a.m.            Coloring contest begins at Twining School

6 Oct.   8:30 – 9:30 a.m.            Coloring contest winner party at Twining School

10 Oct. 9:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.  Free drive-up pancake breakfast at fire department on base