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Learning safety through a musical play

By LESLIE WILBER
Oct. 6, 2009 at 5:06 a.m.

Firefighters Celeste Hunter, Doug Kelley and Matt Gomez perform in "Safety Heroes" a musical play about first aid and safety. The performances continue all week at the Victoria Community Center.

SAFETY HEROES PROGRAM TIPS

Wear a helmet when riding a bicycle or scooter, roller skating or skateboarding.

Fasten your seatbelt. Children shorter than 57 inches tall should also use a booster seat.

Cover your mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. If you do not have a tissue, cough into the crook of your elbow.

The first time you enter a pool or other water, go in feet first. Don't dive head first.

Weak swimmers should use personal flotation devices.

Treat minor burns with cold water, then wrap them in sterile gauze. Do not put lotions, ointments or anything else on the burns.

Matches are tools, not toys. Do not play with them.

Source: Victoria Fire DepartmentIF YOU GO

Safety Heroes is free and open to the public. Shows are at 9 and 10 a.m. on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, and at 1:15 p.m. Thursday and Friday.

All shows are at the Victoria Community Center, 2905 E. North Street.

This year, about 4,600 area kids will get a safety lesson from Skip, Toomah and Lu.

The characters star in the Victoria Fire Departments annual safety program that started Tuesday.

They struggle with water, burn, bike and vehicle safety - while trying to avoid passing germs via coughs and sneezes. The tips were passed along by 9-1-Wonder Woman, Fireman and Water Boy, the "Safety Heroes" after whom this year's show was named.

Firefighters have performed the musical programs for at least 16 years, said Elaine Mayer with the Victoria Fire Department.

"We wanted to cover burn safety," Mayer said, because that was the theme for the National Fire Prevention Association this year.

Since flu has been a major concern, the performers also wanted to talk about simple tips for preventing illness, like covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze.

"And we always try to cover trauma prevention," Mayer said.

Westhoff kindergarten student Rebecca Maier was among the most appreciative audience members.

Rebecca stood up to dance and clap as the firefighters sang their final song.

The most important lesson she learned: if there's a fire or you need help, call 911.

"They were safety heroes and it was cool," Rebecca said, summing up the program.

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