Hopkins County Fire Chief Andy Endsley is also Emergency Management Coordinator (EMC) for Hopkins County, and fire safety awareness is part of his duty. He visited on the Good Morning Show with Enola Gay to remind citizens of the importance of fire safety inside and outside their homes, especially now as Spring arrives.
When birds begin to chirp outside, are your smoke detectors also chirping? They may need new batteries, or they may need replacing altogether. If your detectors are over ten years old, you are definitely encouraged to replace them for more modern units. Newer technology has produced improved efficiency in smoke detectors with a ten-year expiration date stamped on them. Additionally, in newer construction buildings, smoke detectors may be powered by electricity while also having a back-up battery. The back-up battery needs checking on a regular basis so that it will function properly in the event that electrical power should fail. Chief Endsley also stated that for residents who cannot or should not stand on a ladder to check the smoke detectors, the Fire Department is just a phone call away. Both county and city fire personnel are happy to assist needy ones in carrying out the semi-annual maintenance that smoke detectors require. Phone the Central Fire Station at 903-439-6217 or Sheriff’s Office at 903-438-4040.
With ample rainfall, there is no burn ban in Hopkins County for residents outside the city limits. However, if you are doing clean-up on your property and plan to burn limbs, fallen wood and other debris, please remember to take safety measures before burning. These measures include burning smaller piles instead of a large central one, making sure there is a water hose or other water source nearby and that the ground surrounding the burn area is clear of debris. Individuals who enjoy backyard cooking or grilling are also reminded to be prepared and to put the same safety measures in place each time before you light that grill.
Chief Endsley also reminds everyone that preparedness extends to Spring’s unpredictable weather. In Texas, conditions can quickly change and become dangerous, so take storm forecasts seriously and stay connected with weather-related sources. Emergency Management personnel take a pro-active approach and will be watching the skies this Spring with your safety in mind. Also, a basic needs kit is a good idea to have ready in case of emergency or if electrical power goes out for a period of time. A basic needs kit would include a gallon of water per person plus non-perishable food supplies for three days, basic tools, a battery-powered radio and flashlight with fresh batteries, a cell phone charger and storage sticks on full charge.