Summit Fire asks residents to check smoke alarms while setting clocks back
Daylight saving time is coming to an end this weekend, and as residents roll their clocks back, Summit Fire & EMS is encouraging everyone to take the opportunity to change the batteries in their smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
“One easy step — putting in fresh batteries — can save lives,” Summit Fire & EMS Fire Marshal Kim McDonald said in a news release. “Working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in a home fire in half.”
The department said when changing batteries, residents should test the audible siren on the detectors and check to make sure the vents are clear of dust. Smoke detectors that are plugged into the home’s electrical supply typically have a 9-volt backup battery to keep the detectors operating in case of a power outage. If the device is chirping, residents should change the batteries and not disable it.
Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors should be placed on every level of the home and inside every bedroom. Community members also should check the manufacture date on the alarms. Smoke detectors should be replaced every 10 years, and carbon monoxide detectors should be replaced every five years, according to Summit Fire.
“Smoke alarm maintenance is a simple, effective way to reduce home fire deaths,” McDonald said. “Smoke detectors have been proven time and again to be the single most important life-saving device in your home.”
Most home fire fatalities occur between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m. when families are sleeping, according to Summit Fire. About 66% of fatalities occur in homes without working smoke detectors.
In addition to changing batteries, Summit Fire is also encouraging families to plan and practice a home escape plan so everyone knows at least two ways out as well as a designated safe meeting spot to reunite and ensure everyone is out of a burning home.
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