Country Music star and former first responder Craig Morgan joined representatives of Kidde Fire Safety, the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC), the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), fire safety advocate and multi-faceted entertainer Kix Brooks and national and state fire leaders to issue a call for support of U.S. volunteer fire departments.
During a media event at the Country Music Awards in Nashville, the representatives announced an initiative to recognize current volunteers and encourage civilians to learn how they can assist their local department. The campaign will also help increase fire safety, as Kidde will donate 1,000 Worry-Free smoke alarms to select fire departments along Morgan’s 2016 tour.
"Over the past 20 years, volunteer firefighter numbers have declined steadily," said IAFC Second Vice President Chief Tom Jenkins. "Without more people assisting and supporting, our communities and homes are at risk. The IAFC is pleased to be a partner in this effort. We will work to raise awareness of this program through our members, and help out on the ground with ‘Open House’ events and support programs at select locations along Craig’s tour."
“Being a volunteer firefighter is a great American tradition dating back to the colonial days,” said Chief Shane Crutcher, Rineyville Volunteer Fire Department in Kentucky, and vice chair of IAFC’s Volunteer and Combination Chiefs Section. “As budgets get tighter and the cost of firefighting increases, we need community volunteers to step up. Whether that’s as a firefighter or helping in the office, we hope this program will generate new interest from good citizens looking to serve their community.”
The NFPA and IAFC will host open houses at select volunteer fire departments along Morgan’s tour, and Firehouse will host an online program that enables the public to vote for nominated volunteers. The winning volunteers’ departments will receive training materials, funding and Kidde smoke alarms for community installation programs. The program will launch in 2016.
About the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC)
The IAFC represents the leadership of firefighters and emergency responders worldwide. IAFC members are the world's leading experts in firefighting, emergency medical services, terrorism response, hazardous materials spills, natural disasters, search and rescue, and public safety legislation. Since 1873, the IAFC has provided a forum for its members to exchange ideas, develop professionally and uncover the latest products and services available to first responders. Learn more