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AFD Unveils Hi-Tech Fire Safety Trailer

Updated: Friday, June 27 2014, 03:58 PM CDT

On Friday, the Austin fire and police departments joined forces to host Take Our Children to Work Day.

Children were introduced to all the various elements of emergency response from air assets, to SWAT, to robotic bomb disposal.

One of the special tools unveiled at the event was the Austin Fire Department's brand new Fire Safety Trailer. The interactive mobile training simulator cost $115,160 but was fully funded through a FEMA Fire Prevention and Safety Grant awarded in June of 2012.

The 8.5' x 34' trailer features two hi-tech training rooms that immerse people of all ages in scenarios from kitchen fires, to trash can fires, to learning how to escape a smoke filled room. Students are able to get hands-on in the demonstrations and use laser equipped fire extinguishers to learn proper response techniques.

AFD's Assistant Fire Chief Matt Orta says, "Our hope is that people walk away from this thinking I actually did this while it was in a controlled environment. Our hope is that they know what to do if this happens to them."

AFD says one of the biggest problems they face right now is residential structure fires that begin in the kitchen, often from unattended cooking.

While they stress the importance of properly placed smoke detectors in each bedroom and major floor of the house, they say the Fire Safety Trailer will allow them to better educate the public through interactive lessons at schools and other facilities in high risk neighborhoods.

By Hunter Ellis

AFD Unveils Hi-Tech Fire Safety Trailer

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