Diane Peltz – Contributing Writer
The third annual Safety Town Event which was hosted by Safe Kids of Macon County took place last Saturday at the Robert C. Carpenter Community Building. More than 15 local businesses, churches, and organizations were on hand to provide giveaways, games, and safety information. The event was made possible through a sponsorship with the Franklin Daybreak Rotary.
More than a dozen fire trucks, police cars, and ambulances were on display for kids to inspect, climb, and examine. As children explored each vehicle they got to vote on their favorite one. This year’s winner was Otto Fire and Rescue’s new “Tanker.” MAMA – Mountain Air Medical Air Lift, Mission Hospital’s emergency medical helicopter – made a spectacular landing. Once the blades stopped folks were able to get up close to examine the chopper.
Events this year included a Buckle Up Baby car seat checking station. Car seat technicians were on hand to make sure young children were in appropriate car seats to keep them safe while traveling. Organizers said that more than 60 percent of the car seats that were checked were not installed properly.
A bicycle safety course was available to children who needed a little help negotiating those twists and turns. Forty-five of the more advanced bicyclists were able to take part in a “bike rodeo” to show off their skills. Fifty free bike helmets were given out to children as well as free ice cream cones.
The Tumbling Teddy display allowed children to see what it would be like to be in a rollover crash without a seat belt. Two stuffed bears were seated inside a car and children got to turn a wheel which then turned the vehicle upside down. The stuffed bears were quickly ejected from the vehicle, simulating what could happen if you didn’t wear your seat belt.
Paw Patrol celebrities Chase and Marshall were also on hand to greet children and take pictures.
Several booths were set up indoors for children to experience hands on activities. The Macon County Library had two bots who could be given a command by pressing appropriate arrows and then having them move back and forth on a map through those commands. A musical station provided an opportunity in which younger children were able to play various musical instruments. Macon Program for Progress was there to talk about the various programs for infant children through five years old. REACH of Macon County gave out lots of freebies along with information on domestic violence.