BUFD offers reflective address panels

NOTE: Front page story

By Brenda Maguire
For Journal Register News Service

“We want people to think about these like they do smoke detectors; it’s another life-saving step.”

Barry Katzin, BUFD Fire Prevention SpecialistWhether it is an emergency that requires police, fire or EMS, every second counts. The last thing those who are in danger want is for responders to have trouble locating their home.The Birdsboro-Union Fire Department is hoping to help remedy this problem by offering reflective address panels that can be mounted on homeowners’ mailboxes.The panels are six inches by 18 inches and can hold three-inch numbers on both sides, holding up to five digits.The panel can be mounted either vertically or horizontally. The color blue was chosen for the panels so theystick out around vegetation.

BUFD Fire Prevention Specialist Barry Katzin said the panels are made from material similar to that found in speed limit signs and other road signs.

“They are highly reflective when headlights shine on them, and that will make it easier for us to see addresses at night,” he said.

Katzin said the Borough of Birdsboro has an ordinance that all homes are to be clearly marked.

“Yet there are many homes in the borough and Union Township, which does not have an ordinance, that are not marked and make it difficult to find in the event of an emergency.”

Steve Dragon, public relations director of BUFD, said that there have not been many panels sold yet.

“We would like to see every house in Union Township and Birdsboro with one,” he added.

Dragon believes when the word gets out more about the emergency panels, they will see more people interested, especially after the reviews the department has receivedso far.

“Everybody likes them,” he said. “It makes them feel a little bit more secure knowing that we’d be able to find them.”

Panels can be ordered at a cost of $20 with the order form at www.bufd7.org or by calling the BUFD at 610-582-0058.

“We want to serve in the best way we can. If we’re looking for a house, time is of the essence. We need to find it as quickly as possible. These panels will help,” Katzin added.

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