Every year, the Utica Fire Department raises awareness by going to various elementary schools in the city during National Fire Prevention week.
Although Halloween is in a few weeks, one Utica firefighter is putting on his costume a bit early.
It may look like it's all fun and games, but the UFD is spreading awareness one laugh at a time.
Utica firefighter Joe Puleo drew on some whiskers pinned on his tail and donned a red and white stripped hat to look like the well-known Dr. Seuss's Cat in the Hat.
"I was trying to rhyme yes. I wrote out a whole skit but it was too hard for me to memorize," said Puleo. But, Joe did what he knew best, to teach the students about fire safety.
During Fire Prevention Week, the theme for the next few days is to urge students to have two ways out.
"Practice your fire drills at home and practice your plan. And make sure there is two ways out. Not just the front door or the back door but another way out," said Puleo.
The National Fire Protection Association says fire is unpredictable and moves faster than we think.We have fewer than six minutes to get out of our homes safely.
So, officials say having a plan in place is key, like making a map of your home, marking a door and window that can be used to get out of every room.
The UFD is urging children to tell their parents about what they learned in school today.
"they're going to remember a good time, they're going to remember laughing. So, when they see me and they'll remember the cat in the hat came to school and he told me to make sure I have smoke detectors in my house and that helps," said Puleo.
Joe says he's been putting on various costumes for the student for the past ten years.
The UFD is expected to put on another performance at Notre Dame and Jones Elementary Wednesday morning.