ROME, OHIO (WOWK) – On Sunday afternoon fire trucks and a host of other groups took a tour around the the Township of Rome for the 50th annual Fire Prevention Parade, as part of National Fire Prevention Week.
Fire crews from Proctorville, Burlington, South Point, Barboursville(W.Va), Township of Harrison, Lawrence County EMS, and law enforcement agencies took part in the event, including local politicians and a newly crowned Rome Fire Queen.
“I just like the atmosphere. . . parades have always been fun for me,” said Olivia Lewis, who is the 2019 Rome Fire Queen from Fairlan High School.
Rome’s fire chief Nick Kuhn said about 50 groups participated in the event, and the thing he enjoys most is seeing the looks on kids faces when the participants throw candy into the crowd.
“Seeing the kids and the joy when the candy starts hitting the road is one of the best things,” said Kuhn.
Huntington, W.Va held its annual fire parade last Thursday, and Sunday was Rome’s turn.
Rome’s parade isn’t as big as Huntington’s, but Kuhn said the message they are all trying to get out is the same and equally important.
The theme for National Fire Prevention Week this year is, “Not All Heroes Wear a Cape. Plan and Practice your Escape,” and Kuhn said one thing people can do to help themselves out and the fire departments is have a smoke alarm.
“Thirty years ago you had up until 17 minutes to get out of a house fire. Now you have three or less, so that is why smoke alarms are important, fire prevention week is important to us,” said Kuhn.
The fire chief said building products, furniture, and bedding are based with products that are plastic and burn faster and hotter. He also said houses are built with lumber and light weight materials that cause them to burn faster.
For that reason the Rome Volunteer Fire Department has installed more than 200 free smoke alarms this year as part of their annual drive, and they did about the same amount last year.
“Our goal to visit at least everyone in the township. We have nearly 10,000 residents and we want to make sure they have at least one working smoke alarm,” said Kuhn.
The Rome Volunteer Fire Department offers free installations and alarms to anyone in need of one.
Kuhn also said people who are not sure who their local fire department is, can call the Rome Volunteer Fire Department, and they will assist them so they can get a free smoke alarm from their local fire department.
Anyone interested in getting in contact with the Rome Volunteer Fire Department can go to their Facebook Page or call (740) 886-6770.