Learning to be safe
HOUSTON – The world is a dangerous place and teaching kids how to spot a potential accident before it happens was the goal of the 12th Annual Ag Safety Day.
The event saw fifth graders from Houston and Houlka school come to the Chickasaw County Coliseum and visit 10 stations teaching everything from fire and electricity safety to basic first aid and the perils of tobacco and illegal drugs.
“We’ve got over 170 kids here today and they are learning how to be safe at home and on the farm,” said Angie Abrams, 4-H Director with the Chickasaw County Extension Service. “These kids get hands-on safety training from people who know the dangers.
Abrams pointed out more than 3,000 kids have gone through the program over the past 12 years.
“We always have good presentations and there is not a doubt in my mind we have prevented accidents with this program,” said Abrams. “If we can keep one kid from seriously hurting themselves or stopping someone else from having an accident, we feel this program is a success.”
Abrams said kids are urged to tell an adult when they see a safety concern.
James Pettit of of Natchez Trace EPA has been doing Ag Safety Day for years and said kids are curious and should be shown how they can get hurt. He said a visual presentation hammers the message home.
“We don’t want you to be scared of electricity but we do want you to respect it,” said Pettit. “Do you know where your breaker panel is? Do you know the danger of sticking a finger in light socket or touching a power line with a kite, ladder or limb?”
Students and their teachers walked around to the 10 safety stations and then enjoyed a noon-time meal before heading back to school.
The grand finale of this year’s event was a visit by the Chickasaw County Sheriff’s Department Drug Dog and a program by Deputy Lee Womack on the dangers of drug abuse.
“The kids soak this up and every station deals with a different safety issue,” said Abrams. “Our volunteers always work hard to make each safety station interesting and teach the kids something that can save their life.”
Safety stations at this year Ag Safety Day and a brief description were:
- Animal Safety – How to act and respond to animals on the farm, around the neighborhood and in the wild.
- Disability Awareness – How to help those with disabilities and how to make homes and schools safe for those with disabilities.
- Choking – Students were taught the Heimleich Maneuver that dislodges food caught in an eaters throat.
- Electricity – Kids were shown the effects of electricity on the body and how to avoid being shocked around power lines or around the home.
- Tobacco – Youngsters were told of the medical problems associated with using tobacco and given literature explaining the harm it can do.
- Healthy Lifestyles – Students were shown the benefits of eating right, exercise and enjoying a healthy lifestyle.
- Sun Protections – Kids were told the dangers of over exposure to the Sun and how to take steps to prevent sunburn and skin damage by the Sun.
- First Aid – This station taught basic first aid for the “Four B” – Breathing, Bleeding, Burns and Broken Bones.
- ATV Safety – Students were told the regulations of riding an All-Terrain-Vehicle and how to avoid situations that could hurt them.
- Fire – Youngsters were taught basic fire safety around the home and farm and told what to do in the event of a fire.
“We do this with sponsors and volunteers and the Coliseum Executive Committee who lets us use the building” said Abrams. “These people do it year after year and there is no doubt in my mind that they are helping stop accidents in our community.”
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