Community Programs

fire-community-4.jpgEach year, the Wilmington Fire Department participates in community outreach events throughout the City.

WFD sees the role of the fire department not just that of responding to emergencies, but also to help prevent them.  

The department actively engages in Community Risk Reduction and works with area partners to address a myriad of topics including child passenger safety, access to working smoke alarms, and fall prevention.  

Education requests must be made at least three weeks in advance by completing a Fire Education Request Form.

 

Public Programs & Education Requests

All fire station visitors are required to fill out a liability waiver(PDF, 126KB)Programs will not be approved for times requested between 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and must end by 7:30 p.m.  

The following educational programs are available at no cost to our citizens:

Safety Programs for Civic and Business Groups

Looking for a program for a monthly church, civic or business organization? We'd love to share safety information with you. We are happy to tailor make a program to suit your group's needs.


Station Tours

Fire Station Tours are conducted at any of the city's nine fire stations. Tours are limited to groups of no more than 30 participants. *All fire station visitors are required to submit signed liability waivers(PDF, 126KB) before tour can start. No children under the age of 5 are permitted to attend.


Truck Display

We offer educational access to fire trucks for a special event or lesson (no birthday parties, fundraisers or customer appreciation events). WFD apparatus is limited to one hour, and may respond to calls during the course of your event.


School-Age Program

Introducing our comprehensive Fire Safety Program designed in accordance with NFPA standards, offering engaging and age-appropriate lessons ranging from 30 to 45 minutes. Tailored for students from pre-k to high school, these sessions cover essential fire safety concepts, including the importance of smoke alarms, evacuation procedures, and the proper use of fire extinguishers for high schoolers. Our program aims to instill a lifelong commitment to fire safety, ensuring that students of all ages are well-equipped with the knowledge and skills to respond effectively in the event of a fire emergency. By integrating NFPA guidelines into our curriculum, we prioritize the safety and well-being of our community, fostering a culture of preparedness from an early age.

  • Target Audience: Pre-school (ages 3-5), elementary, middle and high school
  • Time Needed: This program has differentiated lessons for each age group, including adaptive skills and needs. Ideally, we would spend 30-45 minutes with each classroom/set of students. Depending on the size of the school or group, we could spend a few days visiting each classroom and ending the education with a truck display.

Fire Safety Field Trip

Embark on an enriching field trip to Station 1, where participants not only explore the fascinating world of firefighting equipment and operations but also receive valuable education aligned with the NFPA messaging guide. The experience includes interactive sessions on fire safety protocols, evacuation procedures, and can be catered to your groups specific need or age-level; however, no children under the age of 5 are permitted to attend. This field trip provides a hands-on opportunity to learn and apply essential safety knowledge in a real-world context. *All fire station visitors are required to submit signed liability waivers(PDF, 126KB) before tour can start.

  • Target Audience: Kindergarten – high school (no siblings may accompany school tours).
  • Time Needed: 1 hour and 30 minutes

Campus Fire Safety

Want to include the WFD in your campus programs? We are available for dorm and residence life programs and Greek and student organization meetings. Subjects include cooking safety, electrical safety in campus settings, fire drills, and campus events.

  • Target Audience: College age, on or off-campus housing and student organizations
  • Time needed: Varies by event

Fire Safety in the Workplace

Introducing a tailored program for working-age adults that centers on NFPA messages, emphasizing crucial aspects of fire safety in the workplace. This initiative offers comprehensive training sessions covering topics such as emergency evacuation procedures, proper use of fire extinguishers, and creating a fire-conscious culture, ensuring that employees are well-prepared and proactive in maintaining a safe work environment.

  • Target Audience: Employees of the workplace (ages 18-70)
  • Time Needed: 1 hour

Fire Extinguisher Training

Learn the proper use of a multi-purpose fire extinguisher with this practical training. Groups of at least 10 (ages 14 and up). Electricity is required for this interactive training session.

  • Target Audience: Ages 14-70
  • Time Needed: 1 hour

Steps to Safety

The NFPA's safety program for older adults emphasizes fire prevention through measures such as installing and maintaining smoke alarms, creating escape plans tailored to mobility challenges, and providing education on fire safety. In addition to targeting fire safety, this program touches on fall prevention among older adults. Topics include conducting home safety assessments, ensuring proper lighting, installing non-slip surfaces and grab bars, promoting regular exercise, managing medication, and scheduling eye check-ups to enhance overall safety and reduce the risk of falls. Integrating these measures with NFPA fire safety practices contributes to a comprehensive approach to safeguarding the well-being of older adults.

  • Target Audience: Ages 70+
  • Time Needed: 1 hour

Youth Fire Setter Intervention & Education

Know a child or young adult that you believe may have set or be setting fires? Fire setting is a dangerous behavior, and requires preventative family measures and offers intervention when deemed necessary. Let us help guide your family to safety with this family-based educational program.

  • Target Audience: Ages 0-16
  • Time Needed: Varies on need

Contact

For questions about station tours, truck displays, or educational programs including fire drills and speaking engagements, contact Brooke Sasser at 910.343.3968 or at brooke.sasser@wilmingtonnc.gov.

 


Additional Resources:

Child Passenger Safety

As a parent or caregiver, you recognize the importance of the correct installation and fit of your child's car seat. Proper installation and seat placement maximize safety and protection in case of a car accident. Know for sure that this potentially life-saving device is installed correctly and is the right fit for your child, by having a certified technician from WFD's Child Passenger Safety Program help educate you on best practice when it comes to riding safely in your vehicle.

All of Wilmington's fire stations are manned with trained Child Passenger Safety Technicians, but please call before coming to check the technician's availability. Inspections are offered from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. daily. Our Permanent Checking Stations offer you assistance in the correct installation of your child safety seat. Be prepared to be involved in this education session, as technicians are trained to teach you how to do it yourself!

If you try to reach one of our stations and there is no answer, feel free to ring another station or call back at a later time. Firefighter/Technicians may be away from their station on an emergency call.

For more child passenger safety information, check out BuckleUpNC.org and SafeKids.org.

Guided Car Seat Installation Videos

Working Smoke Alarms Save Lives

All smoke alarms should be replaced after 10 years. Working smoke alarms should be installed in all bedrooms, hallways outside sleeping areas and in living areas. Replace batteries in all battery-operated smoke alarms two times a year. Test and dust smoke alarms monthly to ensure that they are in working order.

Request smoke alarm assistance from our partners at the Red Cross!

The Wilmington Fire Department offers free smoke alarms and alarm installation to residents inside the Wilmington City limits. Those requesting free alarms should meet at least one of the following qualifications:

  1. You or someone in your residence is older than 65 years of age.
  2. You have children under the age of 18 living in the home.
  3. You or someone in your home is disabled, has a medical condition or a mobility impairment.
  4. You or someone in your home is a United States Veteran.
  5. Your household income is less than $30,000 a year.

If your home has alarms that use removable batteries, we can assist with battery changes, providing you supply the batteries and the alarm is less than 10 years old. (Occasionally, we are unable to safely reach some alarms. In this case, we may suggest you enlist the assistance of an electrician or handyman.) If someone in your home is deaf or hard of hearing, we can also assist with adaptive smoke alarm technology. We are also happy to answer questions about alarm placement in your home.

Falls Prevention

Falls are the number one reason Novant NHRMC sees for trauma patients. Despite the common perception, falling is not a normal part of aging and falls can be prevented. There are many ways to reduce your risk of falling. One great way is to use the freeWFD Home Safety Checklist(PDF, 176KB)which takes you room by room through your home identifying hazards. 

Common Causes of Falls

  • Underlying medical problems that may cause weakness or balance issues like osteoporosis, Vitamin D deficiency, confusion or dementia.
  • Medication or drug interactions that may cause dizziness, sleepiness, and/or confusion.
  • Improper footwear (flip flops, flimsy slippers, high heels).
  • Unsafe home environments and hazards like throw rugs, poorly lit stairs or hallways, and exposed cords.

How to Prevent Falls

You can reduce your risk of falling by taking a few simple precautions:

  • Participate in an exercise or balance program to improve strength, flexibility, coordination, and balance.
  • See your doctor to ensure you don’t have any medical conditions that put you at risk of falling. Have your vision and hearing checked annually.
  • Consult your physician or pharmacist if your medications could increase your risk of falling.
  • Use the WFD Home Safety Checklist to rid your home of falls hazards like clutter, throw rugs, and dim lighting.
  • Be extra careful when walking on uneven sidewalks or wet surfaces. Use a cane or walker if you are unsteady.
  • Take your time when standing.
  • Wear proper footwear; well-fitting, lace-up shoes that support your feet and/or slippers or socks with non-skid soles.
  • If you know you’re at risk for falling, get a medical alert device you keep on you to make it easy to call for help.Preventing Falls flyer - tips to reduce your risk

What to Do if You Fall

  • Make sure you don’t have any injuries.
  • If you’re injured or can’t get up on your own, call 9-1-1.
  • Stand up slowly if you can; sit up then kneel. Move to a sturdy chair or table and use it to pull yourself up.
  • Let your doctor know you fell. While you may be tempted to skip this step, don’t. Some injuries from falling, such as head injuries, don’t show up for two to three days. Your doctor can determine whether your fall was due to a medical condition and, if so, work with you improve the condition.

College Fire Safety – On and Off Campus

Our community is fortunate to have fantastic educational institutions in the City. Wilmington is home to both the University of North Carolina Wilmington and Cape Fear Community College. College students, both on and off campus, are at an increased risk for fire. We've compiled the following resources to educate students on their risk factors and ways to mitigate them.

Call Before You Dig!

Every 9 minutes an underground utility line is damaged because someone decided to dig without calling 811 first. WFD responds to dozens of ruptured utility lines every year. Help us keep this from happening by calling 811 first. It's free and it's the law!