MCFRS News Release

Nation's Firefighters Hit the Road to Reduce Firefighter Deaths

20-City Fire Safety Tour Comes to Montgomery County, Maryland

ROCKVILLE, MD (April 4, 2007) - The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation and Dunkin' Donuts have partnered to launch the Everyone Goes Home™ Tour, a cross country trek to raise awareness about the need to reduce firefighter line of duty deaths. The 20-stop tour will be in the Washington metro area on Saturday, April 28, 2007. The event will take place at Lowe's of Gaithersburg located at 205 Kentland's Boulevard, Gaithersburg, MD from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Each year, approximately 100 firefighters throughout America die in the line of duty. Now, through a grant from the Dunkin' Brands Community Foundation, Dunkin' Donuts and the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation are joining forces to try to prevent these tragedies. The men and women of the Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service are fully committed to the efforts of the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation (NFFF), which is headquartered at the National Fire Academy, in Emmitsburg, Maryland.

The upcoming tour will include speeches from local dignitaries and survivors of fallen firefighters. In addition, there will be a family-friendly information fair, complete with fire trucks and equipment, fire safety exhibits and free treats from Dunkin' Donuts.

The nation-wide Whistle-Stop tour, made possible, in part, through a nearly $250,000 grant from The Dunkin' Brands Community Foundation, is a centerpiece of the National Fallen Firefighter Foundation educational campaign, Everyone Goes Home. The campaign is a bold new initiative to reduce preventable line-of-duty deaths by 50 percent in the next ten years.

The Everyone Goes Home effort centers on implementing 16 firefighter-lifesaving initiatives. These initiatives offer real-world solutions to fire service problems, including training improvements, culture change and better fire prevention.

Montgomery County Fire Chief Tom Carr and County Executive Isiah Leggett recently were presented with the NFFF 'Seal of Excellence'. Montgomery County was recognized for implementing the foundation's Everyone Goes Home Program, which improves firefighter safety with its 16 life safety initiatives. The Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service is one of the first and largest combination (career/volunteer) departments in the United States to be able to fully implement all aspects of these firefighter safety initiatives.

The County Executive's budget proposal for FY08 supports these efforts by supporting increasing staffing in fire code enforcement, continuing to champion four person staffing on emergency apparatus, support the SAFER grant, as well as and other firefighter safety issues.

The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation has launched a nationwide campaign to advocate Everyone Goes Home and the Firefighter Life Safety Initiatives. Central to this campaign is the upcoming America's Fire Heroes Whistle-Stop Tour, in which fire service leadership and survivors of fallen firefighters will travel across America during April and May, campaigning for life safety in 20 cities.

The official kick off of America's Heroes Whistle-Stop Tour will commence in San Francisco, California on April 5, 2007. A motor coach, accommodating 55 people, will be wrapped with the program's message, "Everyone Goes Home".

The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation is proud to announce that the following corporations have joined as sponsors of The America's Fire Heroes Whistle-Stop Tour: Dunkin' Brands Community Foundation, ICMA/RC, Lowe's, Kidde, 3M Scotchlite, Motorola, American LaFrance, Roadfitters Sprinkler Union Local 669, and Fireman's Fund Insurance Company, as well as contributions from Firehouse.com, and the Fire Department Instructors Conference.

America's firefighter line-of-duty deaths and injury rates are the highest of any industrialized nation. On average, a firefighter dies in the line of duty every 78 hours, and every six minutes a firefighter is seriously injured. Many, if not most, of these deaths and injuries are preventable. In response to the United States Fire Administration's goal of reducing firefighter line-of-duty deaths by 50 percent by the year 2014, NFFF, through FIRE Act grants, private donations, and the support of national fire service organizations, created the Everyone Goes Home Program, a comprehensive plan for improving firefighter life safety. At the program's core are the 16 Firefighter Life Safety Initiatives, created by the national fire service leadership to serve as a blueprint for firefighter death and injury prevention.

Borrowing from political campaign approaches of the past, the America's Fire Heroes Whistle-Stop Tour brings the life-safety message of Everyone Goes Home and the Firefighter Life Safety Initiatives directly to American fire departments and the communities that support them. Firefighters, survivors, and members of the NFFF will be at each city along the route to discuss these critical issues. The bus, wrapped with the message "Everyone Goes Home" also bears the names of 3,147 firefighters who died in the line of duty since 1981, the first names were complied for the National Memorial. At each stop, local fire departments, officials, and citizens will participate in the day's events of speeches, survivor stories, life safety displays, music, and Everyone Goes Home seminars.

The America's Fire Heroes Whistle-Stop Tour will make stops in the following cities:

DATE/CITY

About The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation

The United States Congress created the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation to lead a nationwide effort to remember America's fallen firefighters. Since 1992, the tax-exempt, nonprofit Foundation has developed and expanded programs to honor our fallen fire heroes and assist their families and coworkers.