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Gearing up for a safe summer

Wasco Code Compliance Division held its Summer Safety event on Monday at Barker Park to educate youth and parents about bike, water and fire safety, and prepare them for the summer.

Code Compliance Office rChristian Tova, spearheaded the event. "We want to make sure our kids are aware of the dangers and how proper techniques are needed, being that they are going to be using their bikes more over the summer, being around pools and with the 4th of July right around the corner, learning about fireworks and fire safety."

Tovar said that his hope with the event was for the kids to "have a better understanding of how to be safer in the summer and a good sense of community, seeing that there are people and organizations that are invested in their future.

"They can come together, have fun with each other, enjoy free snow cones and hot dogs, and participate in the bike raffles."

Free helmets were provided to kids, the Wasco Animal Shelter was there, and several puppies were successfully adopted. Bike Bakersfield hosted a bicycle obstacle course, a station teaching proper bike handling techniques and a helmet-fitting area, along with repairing bikes. Kids enjoyed the pool with an open swimming session.

Captain Victor Reyes of the Kern County Fire Department attended with his team, firefighter Jake Stanphill and engineer Cody Rushing. "We are going over fire safety in the kitchen and having a plan if a fire happens in a structure. It's a family plan to make sure they know what a fire detector is, what it sounds like and that they have an escape route."

He also discussed fireworks safety: "Like lighting them outdoors and never indoors. Never allow your children to handle fireworks. Keep a bucket of water nearby so you can fully extinguish the fireworks," he warned.

Edlin Blankenship, EMS Coordinator with Kern County Public Health, was there to do community outreach, inform the community about water safety and teach hands-only CPR.

She also promoted their Water Watchers program. "It's a lanyard for parents or any responsible adult committed to watching the children or anyone in the water for a specific amount of time to ensure eyes are always kept on the children. Not only can it save lives, but it can prevent drownings."

Tovar thanked his sponsors. "Kern Family Health Care, AERA, California Rail Builders and Wasco Toys for Tigers for their donations." "


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