As part of fire safety education, the Countryside Fire Protection District educates Hawthorn School District 73 students on what to look for in a home that could present fire or safety hazards.
At Hawthorn Elementary South School, third graders spotted oversized stuffed animals in baby cribs, heated hair straighteners sitting on top of a towel, candles burning when no one was home, a pot boiling unattended on a stove, along with an assortment of other items that could cause fires or harm individuals in a simulated doll size house set up for safety instruction.
Earlier this year the third graders became deputy fire marshals for Countryside, said Tony Rodkey, public education coordinator. This designation allows the students to assist the fire department in recognizing hazards in their home, he said. Each year the Countryside Fire Protection District receives over 4,300 emergency calls from fires to ambulance assists, Rodkey said.