ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Firefighters fight hunger with food drive

Sirens will blare Saturday in the town of Superior and village of Oliver. The sound will signal a treat instead of a tragedy. Beginning at 11 a.m., members of the Town of Superior Volunteer Fire Department will be driving along the roads in their...

Sirens will blare Saturday in the town of Superior and village of Oliver. The sound will signal a treat instead of a tragedy. Beginning at 11 a.m., members of the Town of Superior Volunteer Fire Department will be driving along the roads in their service area.

"Be on the look-out for red and white trucks," said firefighter Amy Fiegle. "We will honk horns and sound the sirens."

The firefighters will collect food donations and pass out hot cocoa and candy canes. All donations are going to Northwest Wisconsin Community Services Agency.

"We decided to hold this event as Douglas County has been hit pretty hard with structure fires in the last month and during this holiday season, food and basic necessities are one less thing people should have to worry about," Fiegle said.

The fire department holds annual fundraisers. This holiday, they are turning that around.

ADVERTISEMENT

"It is time for us to show our community that beyond an emergency, we are there for our community, we support them," Fiegle said.

Nonperishable food items, baby diapers, wipes, formula and hygiene products will be accepted during the drive. In addition to stocking the food pantry, coffee and condiments like dressing, ketchup and barbecue sauce are needed at the agency’s soup kitchen.

In the last 30 days, there have been nine structure fires in rural Douglas County, including a fatal fire in the town of Superior and one in the town of Amnicon where a woman escaped in her pajamas. Many of the fires have resulted in significant damage to homes. There have been seven fires in the city of Superior during that same time frame. Four of them were small fires that caused less than $7,000 damage each. No injuries or deaths were reported in the city.

"Smoke alarms are one of the best ways to help prevent deaths from fires in the home," said town of Superior Fire Chief Darryl Fiegle. They should be placed on every level of the home and outside every sleeping area. Smoke and carbon monoxide alarms can alert residents to danger, but only if they are working properly. Batteries should be replaced and the devices tested every six months. If the detector is more than 10 years old, it should be replaced.

"They don’t last forever," the fire chief said.

He encouraged families to have an escape plan and practice fire drills. They can set up a tote of emergency supplies that can be grabbed in case of a fire.

Prevention is also key.

During the winter months make sure that heating appliances are working properly and properly ventilated and outlets are not overloaded with multiple plugs. Space heaters are only to be used when people are in the room and not while sleeping. Wood burning stoves should be maintained annually and the chimneys cleaned. Keep combustibles items away from heating sources. For more fire safety tips go to the United States Fire Administration website, http://www.usfa.fema.gov .

ADVERTISEMENT

Volunteers are also needed to beat down any blaze that starts. It’s a way to give back to the community and be part of a bigger family, Darryl Fiegle said. Contact a member of the local volunteer fire department to sign up.

"I have had an interest in the fire service since I was a boy because my grandfather George Hardy was a volunteer in the town of Woodruff, Wis." he said. The fire chief remembers going to the station with his grandfather to play on the equipment, even tagging along and sitting in the truck while his grandfather operated the pump at fires.

Residents of the town of Superior and village of Oliver will get a chance to see their red and white rescue trucks up close during Saturday’s food drive. Anyone who won’t be home is encouraged to leave donations in a plastic bag at the end of their driveway. The trucks will stay on the main roads.

Maria Lockwood covers news in Douglas County, Wisconsin, for the Superior Telegram.
What To Read Next