The City of Leesville Fire Department, under the direction of Chief Dewaine Lawson, hoisted a new 25’ flag at the WheelMart Plaza next to Wal-Mart Supercenter. Earlier this month, high winds snapped the flag’s rope on the 70’ pole centered at the heart of Leesville’s busiest retail area.


The City of Leesville Fire Department, under the direction of Chief Dewaine Lawson, hoisted a new 25’ flag at the WheelMart Plaza next to Wal-Mart Supercenter. Earlier this month, high winds snapped the flag’s rope on the 70’ pole centered at the heart of Leesville’s busiest retail area.
“The Stars and Stripes flying high and free is our way of paying tribute to America’s fallen heroes this Memorial Day. What better way to hoist a new flag than with the assistance of our first responders who work hard to keep us safe every day. We appreciate Chief Lawson and his great team for helping us to get this flag flying before Memorial Day,” said Mark McRae, Wheelmart Plaza owner.
 “With Memorial Day just around the corner, my department is proud to help hoist this beautiful American flag," said Lawson. "We also want to remind everyone that this weekend kicks off summer. We wish all a safe holiday weekend and hope that everyone will observe the following safety reminders and tips:
Charcoal Grills
Do not wear loose clothing while barbecuing.
Position the grill well away from siding, deck railings and out from under eaves and overhanging branches.
Never add charcoal starter fluid when coals or kindling have already been ignited and never use any flammable of combustible liquid other than charcoal starter fluid to get the fire going.
Be careful when using lighter fluid. Do not add fluid to an already lit fire because the flame can flashback up into the container and explode.
Keep all matches and lighters away from children. Teach your children to report any loose matches or lighters to an adult immediately.
Supervise children around outdoor grills. Keep children and pests away from the grill area by declaring a three foot “kid-free zone” around the grill.
Dispose of hot coals properly – douse them with plenty of water and stir them to ensure that the fire is out. Never place them in plastic paper or wooden containers.
Never grill/ barbecue in enclosed areas - carbon monoxide could be produced.
Make sure everybody knows to Stop, Drop and Roll in case a piece of clothing does catch fire. Call 911 or your local emergency number if a burn warrants serious medical attention.
Propane Grills
Check the propane cylinder hose for leaks before using it for the first time each year. A light soap and water solution applied to the hose will reveal escaping propane quickly by releasing bubbles.
If you determine your grill has a gas leak by smell or the soapy bubble test and there is no flame: Turn off the propane tank and grill.
If the leak stops, get the grill serviced by a professional before using it again.
If the leak does not stop, call the fire department.
If you smell gas while cooking, immediately get away from the grill and call the fire department. Do not attempt to move the grill
All propane cylinders manufactured after April 2002 must have overfill protection devices (OPD). OPDs shut off the flow of propane before capacity is reached, limiting the potential for release of propane gas if the cylinder heats up. OPDs are easily identified by their triangular-shaped hand wheel.
Use only equipment bearing the mark of an independent testing laboratory. Follow the manufacturers’ instructions on how to set up the grill and maintain it.
Never store propane cylinders in buildings or garages. If you store a gas grill inside during the winter, disconnect the cylinder and leave it outside.
 Lawson also wanted to remind all of camp fire safety:
Learn how to safely start a fire. Never use flammable liquids to ignite or keep your fire burning. This means, avoid gasoline, diesel fuel, lighter fluid and other dangerous fuels.
Only start a campfire in a fire pit or a ring that is made of solid construction.
Avoid starting a fire underneath a tree with low hanging limbs or near shrubbery.
Do not stack spare firewood too close to the fire. Be sure to store any extra wood upwind to prevent the fire from spreading.
Do not allow children and pets near the campfire and never leave them unsupervised.
Teach kids how to stop, drop and roll if their clothing catches fire. Have a fire extinguisher close for emergencies.
Keep your fire away from anything flammable, such as dry grass, tents, paper plates, napkins and camping gear.
Be aware that hot embers can re-ignite the fire if strong winds, which we have been experiencing, are blowing.  Make sure the fire is completely extinguished before retiring for the night or leaving. Use water, shovels and a fire extinguisher to make sure it cannot re-ignite.