Cops and firefighters paid a visit to Sombra del Monte Elementary School on Friday to teach students about their jobs and to celebrate National First Responders Day.
Members of the Albuquerque Public Schools Police Department, the Albuquerque Police Department and Albuquerque Fire Rescue were on hand to give presentations and showcase some of the tools they use when responding to an emergency.
Students held signs and gave cards thanking the first responders who visited their school.
“I want you guys to know that as officers, when we join the police department, our goal is to help people,” an APD officer told the students. “And we want to make sure each and every one of you guys are safe no matter what you’re doing. And in the case that you ever need a police officer, and you see one, know that you can come up and talk to us, OK3? And we’re going to be there for you.”
The sergeant gave the students homework to memorize their parents’ phone numbers and to promise to wear helmets and be safe while riding bicycles.
Captain Anthony Justiniano of AFR asked a couple fifth graders to come up and demonstrate how to stop, drop and roll if their clothes ever caught on fire. He also gave homework to the kids, asking them to make a plan with those at home if a fire or emergency were to happen.
“And so, part of the homework that we’ll give you from our side is you need to have a plan with your parents. What house can I go to call 911? Maybe it’s the next-door neighbor to the left, maybe it’s across the street, but we have to have a plan,” Justiniano said, explaining that students should not call 911 from inside their house if it’s on fire, but to find a safe place to call the number from.
After the introductions, students broke into groups to talk to first responders and look at the equipment on display. Some kids got on the police motorcycles, revved the engines and honked horns. Others petted the horses after the mounted patrol rode onto the grass.
The fire department let kids inside its truck, and a bomb-sniffing K9 posed for pictures with the kids. A drone zipped out of a mobile command unit over the heads of students as they watched a $500,000 robot being manipulated with an Xbox controller.
Kids sat inside cop cars pretending to be arrested and others danced in the back of an armored vehicle. One student could be seen waving from the turret of the armored vehicle as teachers rounded the kids up before the last bell rang for the day.