It’s address is 911 Survive Alive Avenue and for 30 years it has been the home of teaching fire safety to children in northern Indiana.
Actually located inside Hannah Lindahl Children’s Museum in Mishawaka, Indiana the “Survive Alive” house was a first of its kind. Fire departments across the country modeled their own houses from one built by Mishawaka Firefighters in 1984. Being one of the first in the country it was also written about in Time Magazine.
The concept is very simple. The Survive Alive house is a scaled down version of a typical home. Children are taught how to safely exit their homes in case of an emergency. Kids go into a bedroom and when the smoke alarm sounds, they are to roll out of bed, check a door for heat and then proceed down the stairs, and out of the house. A fake smoke machine, and a red strobe light would simulate fire and sometimes be seen in the hallway, forcing the kids to use windows to escape.
Once out, the kids had to go to a predetermined meeting place and “count noses” to ensure everyone was out of the house. Once that was done they would go to the pay phone and call 911. During the call a firefighter who is in the control room answer the phone and plays the role of a 911 dispatcher. Kids are asked for their name, address, and if everyone is out of the house.
Kids as young as 1st grade are expected to get out safely and make the phone call. The program is also taught to 3rd and 5th graders who typically use a window to escape the home. In the 30 years of existence over 50,000 kids have gone through Survive Alive.
May 17, 2014 Survive Alive conducting an Open House for the public. Open house included City of Mishawaka administrators, Fire Chiefs, and Congresswoman Jackie Walorski (2nd District, IN)
The program is staffed by on-duty firefighters of the Mishawaka Fire Department during the school year, 3 days a week.
This is an excellent program that has most likely saved many lives over the 30 years of existence.
Congratulations Survive Alive and Mishawaka Fire Department!