Firefighter Lucas Johnson crushes a pop can with the Jaws of Life at a previous open house hosted by the Langford fire department

Fire safety, up close and personal

Langford Fire Department hosts open house this weekend

If you’ve ever wanted to spray a fire hose, crush a pop can with the Jaws of Life, douse flames with a fire extinguisher or learn what firefighters do all day, the Langford Fire Department is giving you a chance.

The department is hosting its annual open house Sunday (Oct. 5).

“We like it to be really interactive,” says assistant chief Chris Aubrey. “It’s a great way for the community to learn about the services that we offer.”

Kids and adults can try out 12 different activity stations. Amid the excitement of riding in the trucks and putting out fires, visitors will also have the chance to talk to car seat technicians to learn how to correctly install infant and child car seats.

Firefighters will also answer questions about which types of smoke and fire alarms are most appropriate and go over general fire safety and prevention concerns.

The RCMP will have a table set up to answer questions about the ChildFind program, and Emergency Social Services will be on hand running through earthquake and disaster safety and preparedness.

Aubrey says it’s a way to bring firefighters and the community together without the stress of an emergency colouring their interactions.

“Our whole purpose is to provide a service to the community. Normally we’re going out to you and we see you on the worst day of your life,” he says. “This is a positive experience for (residents) to come to us. It’s a great opportunity for people to come and interact with us.”

Aubrey adds that the department has an “open-door policy.”

“We want people to feel they can come in and talk to us not just on the open house day, but any day.”

The event features a fundraising pancake breakfast and a hot dog and hamburger lunch, prepared by members of the Langford Fire Rescue Women’s Auxiliary.

This year the open house is tied in with the kick-off for fire prevention week, the motto for which this year is “Working smoke alarms save lives; test yours every month.”

“We’re hoping people will check their smoke alarms and go through fire escape drills this week,” Aubrey says.

The open house runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Oct. 5 at the Fire Station No. 1 at 2625 Peatt Rd. For more information, visit cityoflangford.ca/fire or call 250-478-9555.

acowan@goldstream gazette.com