PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Tragedy gave Jim Wyzomirski, a retired city fireman, the idea to create a safety kit for children. Now, he’s trying to get it into as many homes as possible.
In June 2007, five children died when their house in the Larimer neighborhood of the city caught fire.
“We got there and the house was fully involved on the first floor,” Wyzomirski said.
Wyzomirski was one of the city firemen that was first inside. He helped pull three children out and later found the other two.
“We kept looking up at the house saying, ‘Why didn’t [anyone] go to the window?’ There were five children, one of them being eight. No one went to the window. All they had to do was open the window. There was a porch roof they could’ve climbed out and saved themselves,” Wyzomirski said.
It was staring up at that house that he had the idea to create this safety kit, which he called the Wyz Kit.
“Kids die in a fire because they don’t know what to do in a fire. And that’s kind of what started this,” Wyzomirski said.
Wyyomirski, who is now an active member at the Cherry City Volunteer Fire Department, said the DVD included in the kit teaches kids what to do in a fire, how a fire acts, and some tools so they can learn about how to get out of the home.
The DVD advises to put this smoke detector in the child’s room immediately. There’s also a flashlight and a whistle, which will let fireman know where they are.
“You’re [going to] go right towards that whistle. Now you know there’s someone in danger where that whistle is,” Wyzomirski said.
Several local fire departments in Shaler will out the kits free of charge to families in those communities Saturday and at the Etna VFD next weekend.
“Sometimes if you would’ve just told them what to do, earlier and practiced it, they could save themselves,” Wyzomirski said.
The kits are also available at Winschel Hardware Store in Etna for $25.
Wyzomirski is hoping to work with more fire departments in the future.