Â by Jason Bandaruk
Â If I asked you where your smoke alarms are in your home, could you tell
me? If you’re like many people, you may not pay much attention to where
smoke alarms have been installed. However, location matters when it
comes to smoke alarms.
Smoke alarms should be installed inside each bedroom, outside each
sleeping area and on every level of the home, including the basement.
Working smoke alarms are a critical fire-safety tool that can mean theÂ difference between life and death in a home fire. According to the
nonprofit National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), smoke alarms canÂ cut the chance of dying in a home fire in half. Meanwhile, NFPA dataÂ shows that home fires killed 2,755 people in 2013, an average of eightÂ people every day that year. Many of these deaths could have beenÂ prevented with the proper smoke alarm protection.
As a member of the fire service for almost nine years, I’ve seen theÂ devastating effects of fire first-hand; the burn injuries, the loss ofÂ homes and possessions are distressing. What’s even worse is witnessing a
family’s anguish after a loved one has been killed in a fire. It’sÂ heartbreaking.
As the official sponsor of Fire Prevention Week, October 4-10, 2015,Â NFPA is promoting “Hear the Beep Where You Sleep. Every Bedroom Needs aÂ Working Smoke Alarm!” to better educate the public about the true valueÂ of working smoke alarms in the bedroom In support of these efforts, ElÂ Centro Fire Department will be hosting the annual Open House on OctoberÂ 4th from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.
My sincere hope is that we can get as many El Centro residents toÂ participate in the Open House activities, and make sure there areÂ working smoke alarms installed throughout their homes. These simpleÂ steps can help make a life-saving difference, and prevent theÂ potentially life-threatening impact of fire.
Â Here are additional smoke alarm tips to follow:
Â· Install smoke alarms in every bedroom, outside each separateÂ sleeping area and on every level of the home, including the basement.
Â· Interconnect all smoke alarms throughout the home. When one sounds,Â they all sound.
Â· Test alarms each month by pushing the test button.
Â· Replace all smoke alarms, including alarms that use 10-yearÂ batteries and hard-wired alarms, when they are 10 year old or sooner ifÂ they do not respond properly.
Â· Make sure everyone in the home knows the sound and understands whatÂ to do when they hear the smoke alarm.
Â· If the smoke alarm sounds, get outside and stay outside.
Â· Go do your outside meeting place. Call the fire department fromÂ outside the home.
El Centro Fire Department