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A Virginia podcast producer came up with an innovative way to share this year’s Fire Prevention Week theme with his listeners. Alan Raflo integrated part of NFPA’s Fire Safety Video for Kids (Little Rosalie) into his Virginia Water Radio podcast in an episode about Fire Prevention Week.

The podcast episode also featured a series of safety related mystery sounds. Listeners were asked to guess the sound. The sound of a smoke alarm, dorm fire alarm, and fire hydrant pressure test were included. Tips for preventing fires were listed and 25 seconds of the Little Rosalie fire safety video was played to remind children of what to do in a fire emergency.

Virginia Water Radio includes audio files featuring sounds and music relating to Virginia’s waters, from the Cumberland Gap to the Atlantic Ocean.

Bulletin board showing a house and pathway made out of construction paper showing how to escape in a fire emergency

Hidden Valley Elementary School won first place in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Fire Prevention Week bulletin board contest. Third grade students throughout the Charlotte, North Carolina, school system were asked to create bulletin boards focusing on the 2017 FPW theme: Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!™

The first place win included an awards ceremony, a check for $3,000, student and teacher prizes, a party in celebration, and possession of the traveling trophy for a year. As part of their submission, students provided a video explaining how they created their bulletin board and its relevance to the Fire Prevention Week theme.

Bulletin boards were judged on theme, student input, organization, and presentation. Second and third place, along with honorable mention, and chief’s cup prizes were also awarded.

The contest was sponsored by Response Team 1, Fire Prevention Foundation Charlotte, Firefighters’ Burned Children Fund, and Safe Kids Charlotte Mecklenburg. Partners included the Mecklenburg County Fire Marshal’s Office, the Charlotte Fire Department, and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools.

Billboard with the Fire Prevention Week campaign on it

The Kirksville Fire Department in Kirksville, Missouri, along with the Northeast Missouri Health Council wanted to make sure the community didn’t miss this year’s Fire Prevention Week theme: Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!™ So they had the campaign logo uploaded to a digital billboard. They rented the billboard near Tina’s Hairport and other commercial enterprises to maximize exposure to the fire safety message.

Several people participating in a roundtable discussion about Fire Prevention Week

Los Angeles Fire Captain with the show hostsA Los Angeles Fire Department official made a national TV appearance this week to talk about Fire Prevention Week messaging. Captain Branden Silverman was interviewed by hosts Mark Steines and Debbie Matenopoulos on the Home and Family show on the Hallmark Channel. He discussed the importance of having working smoke alarms and home escape planning and practice. The program aired October 12th and will air again October 13th. Home and Family is a two-hour daily Hallmark series that offers viewers advice in the areas of home improvement, parenting, health and fitness. The hosts participate in roundtable discussions with experts from various fields with celebrities occasionally participating.

Laura King and Fire Marshal Nichols standing in front of the 2017 Fire Prevention Week Banner

During the Fire Prevention Week launch this week at the Ontario Fire Marshal’s office in Toronto, Fire Marshal Ross Nichols had a special message for residents, urging them to take personal responsibility for their safety in their homes.

“The Ontario Fire Service is doing everything we can to keep people safe from fire, but we can’t do it alone,” said Nichols, pictured above with NFPA’s Canadian Public Education Representative Laura King. “Ontario residents need to make fire safety a priority in their own homes. Fire safety truly does begin with you.”

He also encouraged the public to have working smoke alarms and develop and practice a home escape plan.

Pumpkin carved into Sparky image

Fire Education Vehicle parked outside of the mall

Mall display of FPW materials

A firefighter with Sarnia Fire Rescue in Ontario combined artistic vision with excellent carving skills to present the Fire Prevention Week theme with a Halloween twist. Firefighter Trevor Mitchell carved a highly detailed Sparky the Fire Dog® into a white pumpkin, with a house carved beside Sparky, and put the theme around the rim of the jack-o-lantern. The fun didn’t stop there. Sparky hosted a table of Fire Prevention Week materials at the local mall. His image was also featured on a fire safety education vehicle parked outside.

If you’re looking to carve a Sparky Halloween pumpkin or want to use the craft for a presentation, the Halloween Pumpkin Template on the Sparky website is a great tool for getting started. It includes directions and display suggestions.

Kids looking at Fire Prevention Week material on a table at the open house

The Oakville Fire Department kicked off Fire Prevention Week (FPW) activities on Saturday, September 30th at the fire department training campus. The community was invited to enjoy a barbecue, bucket truck and rescue demonstrations, fire safety games, smoke room simulator, antique fire trucks and the junior firefighter challenge.

Oakville is just the latest stop on Sparky the Fire Dog's FPW visits to Ontario. He shared with the public this year’s theme: Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!™

The Fire Prevention Week website offers a number of suggestions for promoting the campaign in your community, including tips for conducting an open house.

Fire Prevention Week in a Box Value Pack includes brochures, handouts, magnets, stickers, and the Fire Prevention Week banner-plenty of giveaways to help keep fire safety on the minds of community members long after your event concludes.

Child squirts water from fire hose while adults supervise

Anyone stopping by Sutton Fire Hall at Georgina Fire Department in Ontario on a recent weekend would have been hard pressed not to find some activity that interested them. The department’s Fire Prevention Week open house featured a pancake breakfast, barbecue, live burn demonstration, fire extinguisher training paired with different community partners, obstacle course, bouncy castle and more. All residents were encouraged to attend, learn about this year’s Fire Prevention Week theme: Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!™ and meet Sparky the Fire Dog®

The Teaching FPW page on the NFPA website includes free activity sheets for the kids, Sparky videos and a library of safety tips sheets to enhance your community event.

Children reaching up to touch Sparky

Sparky the Fire Dog® will be making a whirlwind tour of Hanscom Air Force Base the week of Fire Prevention Week as he shares this year’s theme: “Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!” He’s got something planned just about every day of the observance with the help of the fire prevention team on base as well as personnel of Engine 4 and Engine 6.

Sparky is no stranger to the air base community. Pictured above in this photo from Fire Prevention Week 2016, he is greeting children outside of the Child Development Center.

For communities looking to launch a Fire Prevention Week program or event, Fire Prevention Week in a Box™ Value Pack provides everything you’ll need to make FPW a success.

Pencil and crayon drawing of people fleeing a house fire

A poster contest is one of many ways to raise awareness about fire prevention among young audiences. Local and state public and fire and life safety organizations in Nevada recently kicked off a poster contest celebrating Fire Prevention Week October 8-14 and this year’s theme. “Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!™

Winners were announced this week by State Fire Marshal Bart Chambers. “This year’s theme really stressed that seconds count in a fire. I would like to commend all of the students who made submissions detailing the urgency of being prepared,” he said.

This year’s winners include:

  • Angelina Valdez, Hafen Elementary School in Pahrump.
  • Chase Carpenter, DePoali Middle School in Reno.
  • Ashley Figuera, Carson High School in Carson City. (Poster is pictured above)

This year’s annual fire safety poster contest was sponsored by the Nevada Department of Public Safety, Nevada Department of Education, Fire Prevention Association of Nevada, and statewide local fire departments and the State Fire Marshal Division.

The Teaching Fire Prevention Week section of the NFPA website offers additional suggestions for presenting the FPW message to students, as well as ideas for addressing members of the community, and high-risk populations.

Sparky surrounded by a lot of kids on a playground

Sparky the Fire Dog® was the center of attention at the recent Fire Prevention Week event at Albion-Hetherington, a community housing area in Ottawa. Sparky got some help from Ottawa Fire Services in presenting activities and educational materials to the kids, focusing on this year’s Fire Prevention Week theme: Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!™.

The Fire Prevention Week section of the NFPA website includes a number of ideas for promoting the campaign in your community, including school visits, open houses, and fundraisers.

Colorful illustration of people planning for an emergency under the words, "Talk to Your Neighbor

During this final week of National Preparedness Month the public is encouraged to do its part to get campus, Photo of college campus building followed by Safety tipsbusiness, faith-based organizations and community organizations prepared for an emergency. FEMA provides tools for developing a preparedness program for businesses to plan for and reduce the impact of disasters, tools to make sure schools have emergency procedures in place for disasters that could affect campuses, and suggested steps to protect houses of worship. NFPA has joined forces with FEMA for National Preparedness Month and has a number of resources communities can use with this week’s theme in mind.

Campus and dorm fires information:

  • graphics
  • handouts
  • fire statistics
  • information on safety awareness campaigns
  • educational videos

Safety tip sheets on these topics:

  • campus fire safety
  • safety in places of public assembly
  • religious candles

The fact sheets in NFPA’s toolkit, “Get Ready: Preparing Your Community for a Disaster,” help with preparation for varied types if disasters.

September is Campus Fire Safety Month and NFPA and The Center for Campus Fire Safety (The Center) are working together to help raise awareness of the dangers of fires among college-aged students who live in on- and off-campus housing. During this last week of our “Campus Fire Safety for Students” campaign, we’re focusing on the importance of keeping stairwells clear for emergency evacuations.


For anyone who has lived in dorm room or off campus apartment, you know the rooms are small there is never enough space to store your belongings. But that doesn’t mean the hallway should act as a substitute closet. Keeping exit doors and the stairs clear of “stuff” allows students to make a fast escape in case of a fire.


The short video below features a local college student who provides this and a few other tips that point out the importance of keeping stairwells clear for emergencies.



If you’re a fire safety educator, a professional responsible for student safety on campus, or a parent, take a couple of seconds to review the video and share it with your student(s) on social media, online or in a face-face meeting. 


Learn more about the campaign and get additional resources like checklists, tip sheets you can share at and

Fire Prevention Week message on electronic social media card

NFPA simplifies the process of sharing this year’s Fire Prevention Week theme: Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out™ through social media. A set of ready-to-use social media cards can be posted on Facebook to promote this year’s home escape planning and practice messages. Or they can be used however you want to support your FPW efforts.

Just “right click” and download.

Coloring sheet with NFPA logo at the center and the words: Plan 2 Ways Out of Every Room

Coloring isn’t just for the kids anymore. It’s for the kids and adults. The first commercially successful adult coloring books came on the scene in 2012-2013. Their popularity has grown ever since. People color to de-stress, to self-express, to relax their minds. They’re forming coloring clubs and meeting in libraries, bookstores, and yoga centers. They come armed with expensive pencils, fine line markers, designer crayons, and sometimes a glass of wine.

Now they can shade, highlight, blend, and daringly scribble while learning about fire safety. The NFPA Coloring Sheet, “Plan 2 Ways Out of Every Room," features a key component of this year’s Fire Prevention Week theme. The sheet can be used as a stand-alone activity or paired with all kinds of neat items for all ages from Fire Prevention Week in a Box.

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