Translation

Back in class, fire safety experts get a lesson in terminology

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By Lisa Braxton

There’s a new twist on the “swear jar” this week at the National Fire Academy in Emmitsburg, Maryland. Fire officials and fire and life safety educators participating in the Urban Fire and Life Safety–Issues and Solutions class aren’t putting money in a jar every time they swear, they’re putting money in a tray every time they use the term “smoke detector” when they mean “smoke alarm.”

Lieutenant Derrick Ready of the Baltimore Fire Department led the charge in requiring that proper terminology be used when referring to smoke alarms. The exercise is a great reminder that the term “smoke detector” is generally used to describe an interconnected system sometimes monitored remotely that is commonly found in hotels, hospitals, and other commercial or industrial settings.

Lt. Ready’s 27 classmates, including NFPA Senior Project Manager Karen Berard-Reed, members of NFPA’s Urban Fire and Life Safety Task Force, and instructor Sharon Gamache, formerly of NFPA, all agreed to the challenge.

The penalty for each verbal slip was 25 cents the first day. The fine was increased to 50 cents the second day. By day three, $7.25 had been collected. The money will go toward the purchase of a brick on The Walk of Honor® of the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation.

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Source:: NFPA – Safety Information

Michael S. Williams

Michael S. Williams

Williams founded the Fire Services Training Institute in 1995 to find solutions to the challenges confronting the volunteer fire service. He has been an active member of California State Firefighters Association (CSFA) since 1994, having served on the volunteer and public relations committees, and as a southern division deputy director. He sits on several local organizations including the Santa Barbara County Fire Safe Council, the Tri-Counties Training Officers Association, Santa Barbara Chapter of CAER and is a founding member of the Santa Barbara PIO group Emergency Public Information Communicators (EPIC). He has been the author of many articles and a columnist for a local newspaper on public safety matters. He is also the co-host of Community Alert on KZSB AM-1290 in Santa Barbara. Williams has been a member of the California State Board of Fire Services since 2008. Prior to becoming involved in the volunteer fire service, Williams was a California police officer for 12 ½ years and a POST certified Field Training Officer. He is a licensed private investigator and security consultant specializing in self-insured, government and insurance defense assignments.


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