CHARLOTTESVILLE, V.A. (WVIR) - While many of us are enjoying the Thanksgiving holiday at home with family and friends, first responders are still on call, ready to jump into action at a moment’s notice.
But that doesn't mean they don't take some time out to give thanks with their work family.
“The fire service is an extended part of our family. We spend more time with our coworkers here actually than with our family, because of the nature of our schedule,” CFD Captain Lance Blakey said.
It was business as usual at the Charlottesville Fire Department's Ridge Street Fire Station Thursday, November 28, only with a little extra turkey and pumpkin pie.
Blakey says everyone has a place at the table on Thanksgiving.
"Ever since I can remember, when I got here around 15 years ago, we have done Thanksgiving dinners every year, so it's been a long standing tradition," the captain said.
With so many in the kitchen over the holiday weekend, Blakey says it's important to put safety first - even while you're busy having fun with your family and friends.
"Thanksgiving is the peak time for fires in the home. So we want to remind our citizens that always stay in the kitchen when you are cooking, because that's the number-one cause of cooking fires. And just for safety of our children, just make sure you stay, keep the kids out of the kitchen. You want to make sure you have a 3-foot radius in the kitchen,” Blackey advised.
Area law enforcement, firefighters, paramedics, EMTs, and dispatch personnel all do what they can to help make the holiday weekend special. But there's one thing they say they all agree on: the job always comes first.