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Thursday, March 8, 2012

Upper Marlboro House Fire

MEDIA CONTACT: Mark E. Brady, Chief Spokesperson, 240-508-7930

Firefighters from Upper Marlboro made a quick knockdown of a fire in a 2-story single family home.  Around 4:00 pm today, Fire/EMS units responded to the incident in the 4000 block of Terrytown Court and arrived to find heavy fire coming from the lower level windows extending to the upper level and roof.  The quick extinguishment prevented even more extensive damage to the house.

Two adults and nine children reside in the house.  The County Citizen Services Unit and the American Red Cross are providing shelter to the adults and five of the children.  The other four children will stay with a family member.  No civilian or firefighter injuries were reported.

The cause of the fire is under investigation, however, appears to be accidental.  Preliminary fire loss is estimated at $100,000.

Firefighters arrived to find fire and smoke showing. (R. Kight)

Firefighters on the interior knock the fire down. (R. Kight)

The fire appears to have started in the basement and extended to the upper level and roof. (Brady)

Firefighters from the Upper Marlboro Fire/EMS Station (Pratt Street) were the first to arrive. (Brady)

Firefighters check to ensure the fire did not extend to interior walls. (Brady)

MEDIA ADVISORY - Fire Safety Day at Benjamin D. Foulois Creative & Performing Arts Academy

The Prince George's County Fire/EMS Community Advisory Council would like to inform you and ask for your support at our Inaugural Fire Safety Day. This event is in partnership with the Prince George's County Fire/EMS Department, Prince George's County Fire/EMS Community Advisory Council (CAC), Prince George's County Public Schools System, Prince George's County Office of Homeland Security, Emergency Response and Prince George's County Maryland Citizen Corps Council.

The event is scheduled for Friday, March 9, 2012 9am-11am

The event location is Benjamin D. Foulois Creative & Performing Arts Academy, Morningside, MD

The event will focus on:
  • Fire Prevention Strategies
  • 911 Emergency Calls
  • Natural Disasters (Homeland Security Simulation Trailer)

For more information contact: Diana Fennell, dmfennell@pg.md.us

Spring Forward - Spring Into Action - Change Your Clock - Change Your Battery

Twice a year, in the days leading up to time adjustment for Daylight Saving Time, members of the fire service remind everyone to complete an even more important task in addition to adjusting their clocks.  When you change your clock - change the battery in your smoke alarm and carbon monoxide (CO) detector as well.  Remember, this Sunday, March 11, we will adjust our clocks forward one hour for Daylight Saving Time and provide fresh batteries in your 24 hour protection against home tragedies; smoke alarms and CO detectors.

Prince George's County Acting Fire Chief Marc S. Bashoor stated, “It is important for everyone to understand, that the best staffed, best equipped, and best funded Fire Department may not be able to save you in time, on their own. We must accept the personal responsibility to help ourselves, to make ourselves safety conscience and improve our home preparedness and safety.  Your first step is to install and maintain working smoke alarms and CO detectors.”
According to the United States Fire Administration,  every year, approximately 2,600 Americans die in home fires.  Over half of these deaths (52%) occur between the hours of 10:00pm and 7:00am, when residents are typically sleeping. Smoke and toxic gases from a home fire are as deadly as heat and flames.  Just two or three breaths of toxic smoke can render you unconscious.  The majority of fire victims die or are injured from exposure to smoke and toxic gases, such as carbon monoxide, not actual burns.  In addition, smoke obscures vision, decreasing your ability to escape.
Smoke alarms save lives, prevent injuries, and minimize property damage by detecting fires early and alerting residents, allowing crucial time for you and your family to escape.  The risk of dying from a fire in a home without working smoke alarms is twice as high as in a home that has working smoke alarms.

Please remember when you move your clocks forward this upcoming weekend to reflect the start of Daylight Savings Time; change the batteries in your smoke alarms and CO detectors as well.

Residents are reminded to:
  • Change the batteries in their smoke alarm and CO detectors at least once-a-year.
  • Test your alarms monthly by pressing the test button on the face of the alarm cover.  This task should be performed on the first day of every month - Safety First Day of the Month.
  • Install a smoke alarm on every level of your home.
  • Once your smoke alarm has protected you for 10 or more years and 8 years for CO detectors - it is time to retire it and obtain a new one.
  • Plan and practice a home escape in the event of an emergency-designate a safe meeting place outside.
Prince George's County citizens and residents are eligible to have a working smoke alarm installed in their home; free of charge.  Call our Safety First Smoke Alarm line at 301-864-SAFE (7233) and make your appointment.