Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Sad Reminder

A few days ago, I read a news story about how a fire broke out at a daycare provider's house. It was an in-home thing and she was caring for 6 kids that day. Sadly, she was only able to save 5 of the 6 children. The sixth little boy, a 22 month old, died in the fire that day.

My first reaction was panic. My little boy goes to daycare! Oh no! Irrational, yes, but it was my first thought. Secondly, I wanted to know more about this story. So, I googled around and found some other tidbits of information in other articles.

The fire broke out because apparently, some of the children were playing with matches. Where the lady was during this time and why there were matches accessible is beyond me. But what really plagued me was how this little boy was left behind. Turns out that someone was driving by and helped the lady run back in to rescue more children. They went back in for the last little boy and couldn't find him. Anywhere. The fire fighters looked and couldn't find him. Finally, the smoke was too thick and they had to stop looking.

He was found hiding in a closet under a stack of jackets.

Why do I share this sad little story today? Because I feel compelled to remind my fellow mommies: it is very common for children to hide when there is a fire. They are scared and don't know what to do, so they hide. It makes sense, but it never even occurred to me.

My point is this: don't forget to take the time to teach your little ones that they should NEVER EVER hide during a fire. Teach them to get down on the floor and crawl. Show them pictures of firemen in full gear and masks and explain that they are here to help. Not doing so can be the difference between life and death.

I told my daycare lady this and she said that she has a fire exit plan and that they are required by law to practice every six months with the kids. She also said that as soon as she gets a couple more kids, she plans on having the police and fire departments come to the house and do a little presentation and teach them that they are good guys. Apparently, they will do this, time permitting.

Anyway, sorry for the bummer post, but it really resonated with me and I really felt that it was an important reminder.


Joy said...

that is an important reminder and i never would have thought about telling the kids not to hide during a fire. thanks for the post. that is such a sad story. cade and i were talking yesterday about the two cessnas that collided and how one person in a car lot below was killed. you just never know and the only thing that brings me comfort when i start getting freaked out by dying or my loved ones dying is knowing that God has it all under control. He knows when life starts and ends and somehow i feel comforted because it's not up to me and doesn't necessarily depend on what i do or don't do. okay, long comment. i'm done now.

Rachel said...

wow. i guess this is a conversation to start having with my 2.5 year old!

Lisa Leonard said...

Ugh, so, so sad! I hate thinking about stuff like this but it's good to talk about it.

Jacquelyn said...

I've also heard that kids will hide from a fireman (they look really big and scary with all their equipment on). We take the kids to the fire department open houses in October to teach them about fire safety and we try to reinforce the info during the year (usually every time I burn something in the oven. Zak and Eliot both know their address and Zak also knows how to dial 911 but we haven't practiced a fire drill or earthquake drill yet. Thanks for the reminder to prioritize these things!