PLAINS TOWNSHIP, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — An annual community-building campaign took place across the nation tonight. Every year, first responders spend the first Tuesday in August connecting with the people they serve.
National Night Out is a community-police awareness-raising event held in neighborhoods all over the United States.
In Plains Township, police and firefighters hosted a free event in the municipal park with food, music, and activities.
“With the way things are going on in the world right now, we’re hoping that they realize that we’re on their side. We’re the good guys, we’re not out there to hurt anyone, we’re there to help everyone,” explained Patrolman William Poulos of the Plains Township Police.
Patrolman Poulos says it’s a great opportunity to bring police and neighbors together under positive circumstances rather than in an emergency when tensions are high, “You see us, you’re able to interact with us and talk with us, and see that we’re human also.”
It’s also an opportunity to educate the community about safety in Plains Township, firefighters did a demonstration with the jaws of life.
“The fire department is going to do a demonstration on vehicle rescue. They’re going to simulate a real-life scenario where we’re going to cut a car apart and explain the scenario as it’s unfolding,” stated Stephen Motil, Firefighter of Plains Township.
In Dallas Township, kids explored a range of emergency vehicles that help first responders answer the call by land, air (helicopter), or by sea and learned about the people behind the badge
“They’re very important to our communities of course and keeping us all safe,” said Matt Tarr, Chaplain of the Dallas Township Police.
The idea originated in Pennsylvania in the ’80s a volunteer with a community watch program outside of Philadelphia established the national association of town watch and introduced the National Night Out campaign.