Pigeon Forge Firefighters use 'Fireman Fred' to share a safety message with kids. (Source: Kyle Grainger, WVLT)
PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Pigeon Forge Firefighters took a safety message to more than 700 kids at Pigeon Forge Primary School on Wednesday, in hopes to keep them safe in the event of a fire.
Chief Tony Watson says visiting school children is one of his favorite things to do. He hopes kids will take a safety message home they'll use for the rest of their lives and be a reminder for their parents.
"So some of those things that we've got feedback from in the community from the years we've been doing it, and we know it's made some differences out there," said Watson.
Watson says he tries to make learning fun for the kids. Part of that includes a giant inflatable called 'Fireman Fred'.
"It makes it fun. We know through studies and education that if we make something fun they're going to remember it a whole lot more and that's what we try to do," he added.
Watson wants to remind people about having a working smoke detector in their homes. Tennessee ranks 3rd in the nation for the number of fire related deaths. Watson says during his career he's seen may time where the death could have been prevented with a working smoke detector.
Pigeon Forge Firefighters will come to your home to test your smoke detector and put one up for you if you need one. Watson recommends replacing smoke detectors if they are over 10 years old.