Touch button fire safety

Firefighter Drew Perkins with the new touch public safety touchscreen AVI
16th May, 2007

A chance meeting between a firefighter and a businessman on holiday in France has led to the introduction of an innovative fire safety education system for the people of Shropshire.

Telford firefighter Drew Perkins was on holiday in the south of France when he struck up a conversation with a fellow caravanner at a site near Bordeaux.

"He told me about a new machine which educates the public. It is a touch button interactive display which I thought we could use in Shropshire for fire safety education," said Drew, who informed the community fire safety team at Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service in Shrewsbury on his return.

Community Fire Safety Officer Alison Teece took up the challenge to get funding for the AVI interactive kiosk which resulted in an £8,000 sponsorship from the Telford & Wrekin Safer and Stronger Communities Partnership.

Computer aided software has been adapted for the monitor to run animated graphics aimed at under 5s, teenagers and adults. Young children play a game which teaches them about danger, teenagers can put out fires with a robot while adults get safety information through an interactive quiz game on the Who Wants to be a Millionaire theme.

"It includes all aspects of community safety including fire, roads, drug awareness and the environment dealing with issues such as fly tipping," said Alison.

The kiosk will be launched in Telford as soon as it has undergone initial tests.