Big Country RAC
4373 Rio Mesa
Abilene, Texas 79606
office: 325-660-6081
fax: 877-412-3701
What's Happening
With RAC D
SFD holds car seat checkup

The Sweetwater Fire Department hosted a car seat
checkup event in Sweetwater on Tuesday at the Nolan
County Plaza. Certified car seat technicians were on
hand to ensure that children are riding safe in their
car seats.

Many volunteers and organizations were at the event to
help with the cause including the Big Country Medical Reserve Corps, Rolling Plains Memorial
Hospital employees, the Roscoe Volunteer Fire Department, the Texas Department of Public Safety,  
                                    Safe Kids of San Angelo, the Scurry County Extension Office,
                                    National Honor Society, retired firefighters and various others.
                                    Also helping who were not at the event were the B Shift of the
                                    Sweetwater Fire Department. "We opened up the first car seat
                                    around 2 p.m. and none of the car seats were put together, so
                                    they got all of the car seats ready for the beginning of the car seat
                                    checkup at 4 p.m. That was a huge help and I really appreciate
                                    that, " said Sweetwater Emergency Services Manager Grant
                                    Madden.

According to Madden, about 64 children were checked
and most of those children received new car seats. The
car seats were donated by the Regional Advisory Council.
Catie Wiedenhofer, coordinator with Safe Kids of San
Angelo, wanted to remind parents of the new Texas law on
car seats. Any child under the age of eight, unless over
4'9'', are required to be in a belt positioning booster seat.
"This law was passed to keep our children safe. Four
children a day nationally are killed in automobile accidents. We support Texas’s new booster seat in
a booster seat are significantly less likely to be killed or injured in motor vehicle crashes than
children who are unrestrained. For children ages 4 to 7, booster seats have been shown to reduce
injury risk by 59 percent compared to just safety belts alone," she said.
The response provided by the MRC to the Mitchell Count fire was a great effort of local volunteers.  
Two  of them drove their personal trucks to the station and gathered the needed supplies and took
them to Mitchell County and started setting up the shelter while other MRC volunteers came in their
POVs and started setting up as well.  They had their vest, name tags, and IDs so they were easily
identifiable and had a very well-rehearsed command system set up.  At one point, they broke into
two groups and started setting up a second shelter for people that were displaced from their homes
at a local church.  The initial shelter was for the nursing home that had to evacuate due to the fire
that was coming towards it.  

Having such a dedicated group of volunteers with the training and willingness to help made a huge
difference in getting the shelter operations underway.  When the nursing home staff approached
them with additional needs, the needs were directed up the chain of command and addressed within
minutes.  At this point, the volunteer with the truck that had pulled the trailer over the first time,
drove back to Sweetwater and got another trailer load to start setting up another shelter.  

Once the fire danger had passed, the volunteers (all of whom were still there) started cleaning up
the shelter and setting it back up for the fireman rehab station.  Only then did the volunteers leave
and head back to their homes in Sweetwater and Nolan County.  

I hope this is what you were needing.  Feel free to  call me or email me with any questions or
clarification.

Thanks,
Grant

Big Country Rac D MRC