Carters Valley Volunteer Fire Department Assistant Chief Mike Yates demonstrates a fire-suppression blanket. Photo by Jeff Bobo.
CARTERS VALLEY — A Hawkins County fire department has come up with an idea for raising a little money while at the same time hopefully preventing fire-related injuries, damage and even possibly death.
The Carters Valley Volunteer Fire Department is now selling the “FryerFighter” — a kitchen fire suppression blanket invented by a fireman from Maine — for $40 each.
CVVFD Assistant Chief Mike Yates noted Sunday that there have been two serious cooking fires in his fire department’s service area in the past few months. In one case, a man’s frying pan caught fire, and as he attempted to take the pan outside the wind blew the door into the pan and splashed burning grease all over the man.
The man was seriously burned and eventually had to go to a burn care center in Chicago, Yates said.
In another incident a group of fishermen were frying their catch in a motor home when the stove caught fire.
“They tried to put it out with water, which most people know is not the right thing to do,” Yates said. “When that water hit it, the fire spread and destroyed their motor home.”
Volunteer fire departments are always looking for ways to raise money to cover the major costs such as equipment, fuel and insurance, but Yates said the FryerFighter can also save lives.
The 36-inch-by-36-inch blanket is fireproof and impervious to temperatures up to 3,000 degrees. You can buy it in a plastic container for storage in a drawer, or in a wooden holder that mounts onto the wall.
“Kitchen fires are very common, not just in our area but all over the country,” Yates said. “With the two fires we had here just recently, having a kitchen fire suppression tool like this handy could have made a big difference. Our goal is to prevent fire deaths, injuries and damages, so when we got the opportunity to sell these blankets as a fund-raiser, it was a no-brainer.
“We’ve tested it out, we know it can work, and we’re hoping that people will help us out and help themselves out by purchasing one for their home.”
The CVVFD stands to make $9 for every blanket it sells. Anyone interested in purchasing a blanket can call the department at 357-7107, and leave a message if no one answers.