COMMENTARY: A candle, a family and a late-night fire

Hello, my name is Smokey and I am a smoke detector. I warn people about fires when they don’t know about them.

I have to get checked every month so people know that I’m still working, so I can detect when there is a fire, if needed.

So this is a story about how I saved a family in the middle of the night because of candles that weren’t blown out before the family went to bed:

“Goodnight everyone!” exclaimed the Dad of the family.

“Goodnight Daddy!” replied the children. But I noticed that the Dad was doing something wrong — he was lighting a candle in the kitchen.

“Don’t light the candle — no, no, no!” I screamed, but I guess he couldn’t hear me because he lit it anyway.

“Sugarplums,” I said. I guess he thought nothing bad could happen, but he was wrong. He went to bed, leaving me with the annoying candle.

I stayed up all night with the constant flicking, on and off. But at 1 a.m., the wax went down, way down. Suddenly, the fire fell, and caused a huge, bright light — fire. It burnt everything that was in its path.

You probably know what I did — yep, I started screaming. I screamed as loud as I could. Even though humans can only hear my screaming as “beep! beep! beep!” I still did it anyway to wake the family up.

I guess it worked because they were up and doing their escape plan like they practiced every month.

“Beep up the good work, guys!” I tried screaming, but I think it only came out as “beep! beep!”

Luckily, most of the family members were out the door, and running to their mailbox.

The father called the firefighters, and they came as quickly as they could. All the house wasn’t caught on fire, but the majority was. The firefighters stopped the fire before it got to me. (Luckily!)

I was very happy for the family because they all got out of the house perfectly.

l just couldn’t stop smiling that day, not just because l didn’t catch on fire, but because the family did the escape plan very well. I’m glad they practice every month, or they wouldn’t have known what to do.
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I hope you liked the story I shared with you to tell you to check your smoke detector every month — and don’t forget.

Smoke detectors warn you that there is smoke or a fire in the house. I’m Smokey, and I want to keep you safe.

Emily Sandin is a student in  Mrs. lbsen’s class at Perry Hill School. This essay won first place in Shelton’s sixth grade essay/public service announcement fire prevention contest.