Students at Beatrice Community Preschool got a lesson in fire safety from Beatrice Fire and Rescue Tuesday.
As part of Fire Safety Week, both morning and afternoon preschool classes got a chance to explore inside a real fire truck and ambulance and see what a firefighter looks like with all his or her gear on, courtesy of Beatrice Fire and Rescue.
When Jake Yurka put on his heavy, yellow fire gear with help from captain Corey Lieneman, he warned them that it might be a little scary, and his voice might sound a little funny, especially with his breathing mask on.
“The kids love it,” said firefighter Nick Koch. “At that age, it's kind of hard to go over a whole lot of fire safety stuff, but we put our gear on so they can see what a firefighter looks like, because that can be kind of scary for little kids.”
Preschoolers are spending this week learning how to stay safe in case of a fire, said Preschool Director Missy Timmerman. On Monday, they built construction paper fire trucks and tried on firefighter costumes.
“It's a fun way to get them introduced,” Timmerman said.
Despite the cold and rainy weather, students were jumping up and down at the prospect of getting to climb aboard a real fire truck and ambulance.
Koch prepared a group of preschoolers to climb aboard the ambulance and check out the things inside.
“Has anybody ever ridden in an ambulance before?” Koch asked the students.
Many of the students yelled “Yeah!” in unison, before being reminded by their teacher that they probably hadn’t.
“We let them see the back of an ambulance if in case, unfortunately, they ever have to go in one, they've at least seen it before and they're not scared,” Koch said.
Next to the fire truck, Jeff Hays and Kitrik Ahl were showing the kids what kind of gear sits behind the many doors of a fire truck, before lifting them into the cab.
“We come out here, do a little fire safety presentation inside and show them the trucks,” Koch said. “And it gets us out of the station.”