VDFP Encourages Virginia to Look. Listen. Learn. During Fire Prevention Week, October 7-13
October 1, 2018

The Virginia Department of Fire Programs (VDFP), a leader in enhancing public safety in Virginia, encourages residents in the Commonwealth to “Look. Listen. Learn. Be aware. Fire can happen anywhere,” which is this year’s theme for Fire Prevention Week, October 7-13.

One person is killed by fire every four days in Virginia. As of October 1, there have been 48 total fire fatalities statewide, a 14 percent increase from this time last year.

“It’s tough for firefighters to console victims after a fire has ravaged their homes and communities. The prevention muscle suddenly goes into high gear. By then, it’s too late,” said VDFP Executive Director Michael Reilly. “Virginia firefighters respond to an average of 1,800 incidents daily. Prevention and awareness is crucial to seeing a decline in that figure.”

Look. Listen. Learn.
This year’s Fire Prevention Week theme highlights three steps that people can take to help quickly and safely escape a fire:

  • Look for places that fires could start
  • Listen for the sound of the smoke alarm.
  • Learn two (2) ways out of every room.

Cooking and heating in homes continue to be the leading causes of fires in Virginia, and accounts for a large percentage of the $1.7 million dollar loss due to fires in the Commonwealth last year.

“One of the best times to prepare is now, before the winter months approach. Identify hazards in and outside of your homes and offices, test your smoke alarms, and create safety escape plans,” Reilly added. “It’s a message that has meaning, year-round.”

Fire Safety Tips and Resources
Visit the VDFP website for resources on Virginia fire and data statistics and safety tips for non-residential facilities such as day care centers, public and private schools, and hospitals.

Fire Prevention Week is sponsored by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Visit the NFPA website for additional fire safety information.

About the VDFP
The Virginia Department of Fire Programs provides training, support services, and resources to more than 700 fire and emergency service organizations, and approximately 44,000 fire service personnel in the Commonwealth. Support areas include funding, professional development, research, operational support, technical assistance, and fire prevention inspections through its State Fire Marshal Office.

VDFP Media Contact
Vanessa Copeland – Marketing & Communications Manager
(804) 249-1986