Over 1,000 people turned out to Folkestone fire station’s open day on Saturday (30 July) to enjoy a fun-packed family day out.
Visitors had the opportunity to discover how firefighters respond to arange of emergency situations, watch fire crews carrying out live drills and take part in a variety of fun activities.
Highlights of the day included the dramatic simulatedheight rescue of a ‘damsel in distress’ from a ‘burning’ tower. The ‘damsel’, played by Folkestone firefighter Janson Smith, really entertained the crowd with his costume and acting skills. With the public watching, crews pulled up in a fire engine and pitched a ladder to the tower, performing a live walk down with the ‘casualty’, to great applause. This was followed by awater drill, showing how firefighters would attack a fire at height.
The line rescue team from Deal also carried out a demonstration, abseiling down the tower. A range of fire-fighting equipment was on display, and crews gave tours of the kit, including fire engines, the water safety unit and the rescue boat. Hythe firefighters showed visitors the fogging unit, explaining how it is used at large grass fires. The technical rescue team also set up a display showing video footage of KFRS’s new unmanned aerial vehicle (drone)in action.
The community safety team were also on hand promoting KFRS’s latest cooking safety campaign and encouraging people to sign up for home safety visits. The road safety team took along the ‘modified’ engagement car and chatted to visitors about keeping safe on the road as drivers and passengers.
Folkestone and Hythe fire crews worked hard all day welcoming visitors and helping kids to spray water from fire hoses to knock down cones in the yard. They also proved to be good sports, putting themselves in the firing line on the throw-a-wet-sponge stand, which was a big hit with the younger visitors.
The Kent Firefighting Museum had a stand with vintage fire-fighting kit on display, which was of great interest interested to many people.
Another highlight was the charity duck race in Pent stream, which proved popular with families, as did the face painting and ice cream van.
The proceeds from the duck races, together with sales from the Firefighter’s Charity fundraising stand raised over £400 for the charity.
Folkestone crew manager James Kirk said: “The event was a great success and we were delighted to welcome so many visitors to the station. We hope that people had fun, enjoyed learning about what we do as a service and were able to take away some handy tips to help keep themselves safe, both at home and on the roads.”