By Beth Christian
The Parsons Advocate
THOMAS – On Friday, a program that started in Harrison County and recently expanded into Tucker County, put 10-year smoke detectors in the hands of first, second and third grade students at DTEMS and TVEMS. Cindy Murphy started Operation ‘Not One More’ in Jan. 2015 to help students understand fire safety and expanded to Tucker County. Murphy said the Tucker County Rotary Club donated $3,000 to purchase ‘super hero’ 10-year smoke detectors.
“It’s a super hero because its battery lasts for 10 years,” Murphy said. “You don’t have to change the battery, but you do have to push the button once a month. In the bag with the smoke detector, there is a paper with a phone number. If you cannot get your smoke detector put up, a parent needs to call that number and we will come out and install that smoke detector.”
Murphy said the program was to help students understand fire safety, and said the 10-year smoke detectors are better because they last longer and the batteries are not removable so folks cannot take the batteries out to use in something else, leaving the smoke detectors non-functioning.
Murphy made the students promise to take the smoke detector home and have whoever they live with put up the smoke detector, test it and take a picture of them and their smoke detector to give to their teacher.
As Murphy was talking with students about fire safety, she instructed them to know two ways out of their home in case of fire. Students learned to stay low where the good air is and were reminded to stop, drop and roll if their clothing should catch on fire.
Murphy talked about the difference between needing help and needing to call 911 for an emergency. She told students they needed to know when they call 911.
“I want every one of you to know your address,” Murphy said. “The next thing I want you to know in case you call 911 is your mom and dad’s first and last name, other than just mom and dad.”
Murphy also put on her full fire fighter uniform, just in case she would have to go into a fire to rescue them. She encouraged students not to be afraid of those coming to the rescue just because they look different.
Tucker Rotary Club President Gerald Johnston said they wanted to work on a project with a county-wide impact.
“We had heard about the project Cindy Murphy does and we wanted to do something similar here in Tucker County,” Johnston said. “We gave the money to purchase the smoke detectors for elementary school students in the county.”
Murphy said now that the smoke detectors are in the hands of the kids, the critical thing is to make sure the smoke detectors get installed.
“Now it’s up to the adults to get these up to help save lives,” Murphy said.