2012 Missouri State Fair Provides Opportunities for Fire Safety Education.
Photo by Alan Altis"Patches" talks to kids and mom about fire safety.
Photo by Alan Altis"Patches" and a little girl have an in depth chat about fire safety.
Photo by Alan AltisFirefighters provide an extrication demo to attendees at the 2012 Missouri State Fair.
Photo by Alan AltisFirefighters at the Missouri State Fair provide a fire protection standby during a public display.
Photo by Alan AltisFire department staff at the Missouri State Fair providing a public education demo.
As people travel from all over the Midwest to enjoy the festivities of the Missouri State Fair, the firefighters from the Missouri State Fair Volunteer Fire Department take advantage of the crowds to provide fire education. Each day of the fair thousands of people pass by the fire department which celebrated its 50th year of service this year. The fire department uses Smokey Bear, Sparky the Fire Dog and its robotic Patches and Pumper to entertain with a fire safety message. This year the fire department passed out hundreds of plastic bags jammed full of fire safety materials to kids.
In addition to providing the public education services, the fire department responds to dozens of calls ranging from emergency medical incidents to fires on the fair grounds. This is the 50th year for the fire department which is staffed by volunteers from all over Missouri and is administered by the Firefighters Association of Missouri. The department staffs four engine companies, four ambulances, a first aid department, dispatch center, kitchen, fire inspection division and public education division. In order to fulfill its missions, over 70 volunteers are required each day.