By Brendan Rees
A dream of becoming Fireman Sam for a day came true for many youngsters at a fun Emergency Services day at Banjo Paterson Park, Lynbrook, on Saturday 16 September.
Kids jumped at the opportunity to hold a fire hose and squirt some water during the expo, presented by Hampton Park Fire Brigade.
Families enjoyed a day out with a variety of activities including a CFA rescue display, police brawler van and highway patrol vehicles, Search and Rescue Dogs Australia displays, CFA smoke house, CFA mobile education unit Australian Volunteer Coast Guard, Life Saving Victoria, SES, and Neighbourhood Watch.
Hampton Park CFA firefighter and community safety officer Hellie Aitken said the event was important for the community to support and interact with emergency service members, and learn about safety and how to prepare for extreme situations.
“It just shows them (children) not to be scared if you’re coming up to a police officer when they’ve got all their gear on. It gives them an idea of what emergency services are out there and what services the kids may come across from time to time,” she said.
“It’s an all-round good community thing to show the parents and the kids what’s available and what we do.”
Ms Aitken said Dandenong Rescue demonstrated a car rescue by “cutting up” the car with the jaws-of-life which everyone “loved.”
“We had CPR going, so we had lots of kids doing a bit of CPR and seeing what that’s like.”
Ms Aitken said the smoke house was an opportunity for children to perform a fire drill whereby they got down low on the floor of a building and crawled through artificial smoke: “It’s giving them an idea of what it might be like and a lot of the children learn to get down low and go, go, go from kindergarten and school. So it’s good for them to put that into practice.”
“Hampton Park had hoses out, and kids were having a go at that with the help of one of our firefighters, of course, just to see the pressure that the hose puts out.”
She said there were prize give-aways, a barbecue, and an appearance by Captain Koal adding, “We were pretty lucky with the weather.