New residents of Fort Campbell housing congregated at the Hammond Heights Village Commons Aug. 18 for a small orientation. This meeting, a requirement for all Family housing newcomers, focused on effective methods to keep homes safe and problem-free.

Once residents were signed in and situated in the meeting room, they were presented with a slideshow about fire safety in the home. This presentation was courtesy of Fire Inspector David Land of Fort Campbell Fire & Emergency Services.

Among the topics in the slideshow were smoke detector upkeep, tips on extinguisher use and common places where fires occur in the home.

"The majority of home fires occur in the kitchen," said Land. "We had two kitchen fires on Fort Campbell two weeks ago. They can all be prevented."

With home fires across the country accounting for over $1 million in property damage last year, the Fort Campbell Fire Department wants to make sure that residents are doing all they can to prevent such catastrophes. In addition to checking smoke detectors and being mindful when handling flammable materials, Land encourages Families to form an effective escape plan. Because practice makes perfect, he asks Families to remember a simple acronym: EDITH, or Exit Drills In The Home.

In addition to fire safety literature, Land informed residents that the Fire Department offers free services such as child seat checks and training courses.

"We will be having fire extinguisher training soon, and everyone is invited," said Land.

Following the fire safety presentation, residents were provided with home care and maintenance tips courtesy of Doug Bates, service order manager for the housing maintenance department. Primary concerns centered around issues with lighting and plumbing. Bates provided residents with handy tip sheets listing the dos and don'ts of garbage disposals, dishwashers and drain clogs.

"When in doubt," said Bates, "it's always best to get a hold of us." Residents in need of maintenance assistance are encouraged to call the maintenance office at (931) 431-3966.

New resident orientations take place on the third Wednesday of each month at 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. While mandatory for new residents, established Families are invited to attend as well to receive a refresher course.

"It's a great tool to get to know the housing staff," says David Brockman, Fort Campbell Family Housing communications coordinator. "This is a program we really do enjoy. Not only do new residents become familiar with the housing staff, they also get the chance to meet other residents in the community."

For more information about new resident orientations, call Family Housing at (931) 431-9003.

Housing info

New resident orientations: third Wednesday of each month at 10 a.m. and 3 p.m.

Maintenance assistance: (931) 431-3966

More information: Fort Campbell Family Housing, (931) 431-9003.