HAMPSTEAD — The Hampstead Fire Department was recently presented with a Life Safety Achievement Award for its fire prevention accomplishments in 2012 by the National Association of State Fire Marshals Fire Research and Education Foundation in partnership with Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance Company. The award was announced by J. William Degnan, president of the NASFM Fire Research and Education Foundation.
“When we hear the fire truck coming down the street and see its lights, we know firefighters are responding to someone in trouble. What we don’t know is that these unsung heroes are doing a lot of things behind the scenes that save lives,” said Alan Clark of Grinnell Mutual. “The Life Safety Achievement Award recognizes fire departments for their fire prevention programs that have been proven to save lives year after year.”
Since 1994, the Life Safety Achievement Award has recognized local fire prevention efforts that have contributed to reducing the number of lives lost in residential fires. The Hampstead Fire Department is one of 117 fire departments across the United States to receive the award this year for recording zero fire deaths in 2012 or reducing fire deaths by at least 10 percent during the year. In addition, award recipients documented active and effective fire prevention programs as well as a clear commitment to reducing the number of house fires in the community.
Although residential fires in the U.S. account for only 20 percent of all fires, they result in 80 percent of all fire deaths. The NASFM Fire Research and Education Foundation is committed to reducing that number.
“Experience tells us that fire prevention activity and public education can significantly reduce life and property loss from residential fires,” Degnan said. “Prevention and education are very cost effective compared to the traditional approach of relying on fire suppression. The Life Safety Achievement Award recognizes fire departments for their fire prevention efforts and encourages them to continually improve upon those efforts.”