O'FALLON — The O'Fallon Fire Department was honored with the Illinois State Fire Marshal’s Fire and Life Safety Award at a ceremony at 11 a.m. on Thursday, June 27, 2024, at the O’Fallon Fire Department Headquarters, 1215 Taylor Road. The award recognizes the department’s exceptional dedication to fire prevention and education.

The O'Fallon Fire Department (OFD) was nominated for its innovative and extensive efforts in fire safety throughout 2023.

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In addition to their digital outreach, OFD conducted 30 fire safety presentations for local organizations, including the O'Fallon/Shiloh Chamber of Commerce, Scouting of America groups, local hotels, senior living facilities, and civic organizations like the Rotary Club and VFW. The department also organized fire drills at all 15 school campuses and conducted fire safety assemblies for kindergarten through third-grade students in eight elementary schools.

The O'Fallon Fire Department's commitment to community engagement was evident in their participation in 64 community events. A highlight was their three-day Open House during Fire Prevention Week, which featured live vehicle extrication and fire behavior demonstrations.

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In 2023, leveraging diverse social media platforms like Facebook, lnstagram, Nextdoor, and Ring Neighbors, OFD disseminated crucial fire safety and disaster information.

Collaborating with the Illinois Fire Safety Alliance, the department installed 187 smoke detectors and replaced 160 detector batteries for residents in need. Their latest initiative, "One Home - One Extinguisher," launched in December 2023, aims to install fire extinguishers in homes without them, initially targeting two low-income mobile home parks.

Remarkably, all these Fire Prevention and Life Safety initiatives were conducted without the assistance of any career firefighters, showcasing a level of dedication that is unrivaled in the Southwest region of Illinois.

The award presentation was attended by Illinois State Fire Marshal James A. Rivera, OSFM Deputy Director Allen Reyne, O’Fallon Fire Department Chief Brad White, Illinois State Senator Christopher Belt, and Illinois State Representative Kevin Schmidt. Photos from the event include Fire Chief White with Illinois State Fire Marshal Rivera, and a group photo featuring Illinois Senator Christopher Belt, Illinois Senator Erica Harriss, Illinois State Representative Kevin Schmidt, and O’Fallon Mayor Herb Roach.

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