Fire Chief Mario Orangio and Fire Inspector Capt. Ryan Nicholson are happy to announce that the Watertown Fire Department has been awarded $5,641 for Student Awareness of Fire Education (S.A.F.E.) and $2,996 for Senior SAFE grants.
The S.A.F.E. program is a state initiative that provides resources to local fire departments to conduct fire and life safety education programs in grades K-12. The Watertown Fire Department has had a S.A.F.E. program in previous years, but due to a number of reasons we were not able to continue the program. However, we are happy to announce our re-entry into the classroom! The S.A.F.E. program has a proven record of success within the state, and we hope to educate Watertown’s youth on various fire safety topics. We look forward to working with the School Department, specifically the elementary schools, on this project.
The Senior SAFE program is also a state grant program for local fire departments to provide fire and life safety education for older adults, statistically our most at risk population of dying in a fire. In addition to educating seniors on fire and life safety issues, the Watertown Fire Department will conduct an in-home visit program. The cornerstone of the program is to provide and install smoke and carbon monoxide alarms in homes that are in need. Smoke and CO alarms are critical life saving devices. In many fatal fires, smoke alarms are missing, disabled, or not functioning. By installing these devices for seniors, we feel we will have an immediate impact in greatly increasing their odds of survival in a fire. As part of the visit, seniors will be provided with home safety tips and advice and have a chance to ask questions and voice concerns.
To qualify for the install residents must be 65 or older, own and occupy the home. If residents are renting a home or apartment that does not have the appropriate alarms, they should remind the homeowner that it is the law to provide and maintain such devices.
To qualify and book your in-home visit seniors can contact the Fire Prevention Bureau at 617-972-6510.
Again, the Fire Chief and I are thrilled to be announcing these grant awards and look forward to providing fire and life safety education for Watertown’s students and seniors.