Firefighters using wreaths to promote fire safety

By Ben Garbarek - bio | email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - You might notice new Christmas wreaths hanging outside fire stations in Richmond. And it's not because firefighters are trying to get into the holiday spirit, they're trying to get your attention.

Each one is wrapped with green bulbs but firefighters will replace those green bulbs with red ones each time there's a structure fire. Firefighters are hoping for a green holiday season.

Some hope for a white Christmas, but firefighters are hoping for a green holiday season with their annual "Keep the Wreath Green" campaign. The wreaths glow with green lights but they will be replaced with red ones, every time there's a house fire.

Rosalind Rozier drives by Station 22 off Broad Rock every day on the way to work. She says the red bulbs will get her attention.

"Once it starts changing colors people are going to notice." she said. "They're going to take the measures to try to be careful."

Lt. Shawn Jones of the Richmond Fire Department the number of structure fires goes up when the temperature goes down.

"Right now the cold times are here. A lot of people are going to be using space heaters, decorative candles as a way of aroma therapy in their home, but take the time to keep safety in mind."

Firefighters say last year there were two fire deaths during December, a number they don't want to repeat this year.

"We certainly want to make sure we don't have any more," Jones said. "We already had one that took place about two weeks ago and that's one too many."

A simple wreath can be a constant reminder for people in the community.

"I'll be mindful and keep an eye out for it and watch it every time I go past," Rozier said. "I go past it every day to go to work so that'll be what I do, to look at the wreath every day."

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