Goshen Medical Clinic employee Caroline Robinson admits to being nervous just before grabbing a fire extinguisher and putting out a small, controlled fire on a chilly Tuesday morning.
“I have never even handled one before,” Robinson said, before blasting the extinguisher into the fire and putting it out within seconds. “I have never been in a position where I would have to put a fire out, but know nowthat I can do it.”
Robinson is one of eight employees at Goshen’s office, located on U.S. 421 North just outside of the Clinton City limits, that will learn the proper techniques in handling a fire extinguisher on this day, as well as putting out a small fire, if the need should ever arise.
“I think it is important that we are out here today learning this,” she explained. “I have never had to use one before, but if the time comes, me, along with the other employees here, will be able to handle it.”
It is the second stop at a Goshen Clinic on this day, according to John King, from King’s Fire and Safety in Roseboro.
“Each year, we come and do all the clinics associated with Goshen in and around Sampson County,” King explained. “We just came from one earlier this morning and we will be going to others later this week. They like to know that their employees can use them in case they are in a situation they need to handle quickly. By the time we are finished, we will have trained about 175 employees to use a fire extinguisher … I think it is just great.”
At some locations, King even sets up a mock fire drill before he providing the extinguisher training to test the reaction time of the employees. After the drill, King and his employees, James Alton Britt and Shannon Higginbottom, set up the small fire pit, heated by propane, that will allow each employee time to learn the proper wayto handle and use an extinguisher
“Well, we all see the red extinguishers in buildings, but really, if the time came, would you be able to use one to put out a fire?” he explained. “That is the whole point of what we are doing here today. We want the employees to feel comfortable holding the extinguisher and, if need be, use it. Just last night there was a fire up at Durham Regional and because those employees knew how to use an extinguisher, many lives were saved.”
As curious onlookers at a next door gas station watch Robinson put out her second fire with another extinguisher, King smiles and says, “I think she has got it.”
Robinson is happy as well. “I think it is a great thing that we are being taught this,” she said. “I am really pleased they are out here today teaching us.”
King says this time of year his company keeps busy with the training. In addition to Goshen’s Medical network, King will also be at some of the larger corporations doing the same drills throughout the month of November.
“We go all year round,” he explains. “But it seems like this is our busy time, which I think is great, because our local companies know how important this training is, not just to the employees, but the company as well.”
As Robinson finishes up, she returns to the clinic. Within minutes another employee is out being taught the same technique.
“Some of these employees have never held one of these extinguishers,” says King. “It is important that they are familiar with it and they know how to use it. That is what we want to accomplish today.”
For more information on the training call King at 910-564-2588 or 910-990-5730.
To reach Doug Clark call 910-592-8137 ext. 123 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org.