Fire Prevention Week: "Not every hero wears a cape; plan, practice your escape"

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Scott Warner
  • 6th Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs

The 6th Civil Engineer Squadron Fire Emergency Services Flight from MacDill hosted Fire Prevention Week, Oct. 4-12, with this year’s theme being, “Not every hero wears a cape, plan and practice your escape.”

According to the National Fire Protection Association, “in 2017, a U.S. Fire Department responded every 24 seconds to a fire for 1,319,500 total fires.”

Fire Prevention Week’s purpose is to educate the community about the importance of planning and using good fire safety practices. 

“Fire Prevention Week allows our fire department to interact more with our community,” said Staff Sgt. Jacob Holdgate, a 6th CES FES fire inspector. “The kids especially love this week with Sparky making a lot of appearances, getting to practice being a firefighter and getting to tour an actual fire station.”

The week started when Col. Stephen Snelson, the 6th Air Refueling Wing commander, signed a Fire Prevention Week proclamation, followed by Sparky the Fire Dog welcoming people coming on base and a blood drive held at the base exchange.

Additionally, 6th CES FES firefighters hosted a “Battle of the Badges” softball game against the 6th Security Forces Squadron and 6th CES Explosive Ordnance Disposal Flight Airmen, which saw the firefighters prevailing in the end.

“It was a good game,” said Holdgate. “Whether it’s rain or shine, this is something we personally look forward to every year.”

At the end of the week, base units compiled teams of four members who competed in a challenge, which had 14 total teams go through firefighting drills and exercises in a timed obstacle course race.

The Judge Advocate team won first place with a time of 3 minutes and 28 seconds. The grand prize was a $500 6th Force Support Squadron gift card

“I’m proud of our firefighters who worked incredibly hard to put on this event,” said Col. Eddie Phillips, the 6th Mission Support Group commander. “The Firefighter’s Challenge is a lot of fun, but also give participants a taste of what our first responders experience.”

The firefighters finished the week by hosting a parade and an open house over the weekend.

“I cannot say enough great things about our firefighters here at MacDill and their peers in the community,” said Phillips. “Time and time again, they demonstrate exemplary commitment to our families and the mission.”