Rockingham Fire Department recognized with award
by Dawn M. Kurry Richmond County Daily Journal
The Rockingham Fire Department has earned a 2012 Life Safety Achievement Award, presented by the National Association of State Fire Marshal’s Fire Research & Education Foundation in partnership with the Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance Company.
Rockingham Fire Department qualified for this award in 2012 because it recorded zero fire deaths in structures or a reduction by at least 10 percent during the year. In addition, the department was able to demonstrate the existence of an active and effective fire prevention program and a clear commitment to reducing the number of fires in the homes in the community.
Rockingham Fire Chief Chuck Gardner said the award was unexpected.
“We filled out a survey some time ago, and we just got an award today,” said Gardner on Tuesday. Regardless of the surprise, the chief can’t name one thing about the city’s fire department he isn’t proud of.
“I’m proud of all of it,” he said. “I can’t pick any one thing over another; our activities, our training, the programs we do, our firefighting efforts, the personnel — they are all equally important.”
The fire department has been at its current location on Lawrence Street since 1965, said Gardner. Back when it was located on East Washington Street, he played and hung out there as a kid. His father and uncle were both firefighters. Gardner said he was born into fire fighting and couldn’t do it without the support of his family. His son is a part-time firefighter with Rockingham Fire Department, and also fights fire for the Forestry Service.
Although residential fires in the U.S. account for only 20 percent of all fires, they result in 80 percent of all fire deaths, according to fire officials.
“Experience tells us that fire prevention activity and public education can significantly reduce life and property loss from residential fires,” the NASFM Fire Research & Education Foundation said. “Prevention and education are very cost effective compared to the traditional approach of relying on fire suppression. The Life Safety Achievement Award recognizes fire departments for their fire prevention efforts and encourages them to continually improve those efforts.”
The NASFM Fire Research & Education Foundation is a public interest group whose mission is to reduce residential fire deaths and injuries. The foundation advocates the use of residential fire sprinklers, smoke alarms, carbon monoxide detectors and teaching people fire-safe behavior. The foundation assists fire departments with implementing residential sprinkler/smoke alarm programs on a local basis. The foundation’s partners include the United States Fire Administration, the National Association of State Fire Marshals and private industry/associations with an interest in and commitment to residential fire safety.
— Staff Writer Dawn M. Kurry can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 15, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Commentscomments powered by Disqus
Local Gas Prices