This may sound like a given but do you have enough smoke detectors in your home? Do you have them in the appropriate areas? Are you replacing batteries yearly, testing monthly and replacing your alarms every 10 years?
How long has that alarm beeped to remind you of battery replacement and you took it out to stop the annoyance but haven’t replace it yet? Confession. We’ve done this. Life gets busy and…..and….and….all the ands pile up and this slips out of your mind.
We may be surprised how many of us in the fire family do not have working or enough alarms in our own homes. This is your reminder that we are not exempt from tragedy, neither are our friends and families. It’s our place to know what we should have and make sure our loved ones know. As always, sharing is caring so make sure you know more about alarms and home safety and share it.
I’m learning over 60% of house fire related deaths occurred in homes that did not have working smoke alarms or not smoke alarms at all. These are preventable deaths. These are deaths that could happen to anyone who isn’t properly protected.
There are a few things you should consider when choosing what type of alarms you want to place (or replace) in your home depending on your needs. To view the PDF to the left click here: Smoke Alarms at Home. Here for more about What You Should Know About Smoke Alarms. Don’t forget about Carbon Monoxide Detectors.
According to NFPA.org you should have a smoke alarm in all bedrooms, outside each sleeping area, have them on each level of your home and to prevent nuisance alarms, have alarms placed outside of the kitchen but within 10 feet from the stove. All alarms should be on the ceiling or high up on a wall.
You should test your alarms once per month but using the test button. Batteries should be changed when time changes regardless if they have been “chirping” or not. Replacing them every 10 years will prevent failures. This is such a simple way to protect your family. Oh, and using the “spring forward” and “fall back” weekends as reminders to also check your smoke alarms….that’s an easy to remember tip!
Want some free pizza? Or a good way to convince friends and family to check their smoke alarms? Some Fire Departments are teaming up with local pizza restaurants and delivering free pizzas and checking smoke alarms during the delivery. Awesome. Free pizza is always awesome. Staying safe and bringing awareness is the icing on the cake.
Two other very important things to remember are preventing fires in the first place and what to do when an alarm sounds. Again, house fires do not discriminate, please be sure your families know what to do. If you have children in your home they need to know what smoke alarms are, what they do and what to do if they go off. Later this week we will be sharing fun for kids, including information on home escape plans and following through with those plans. (Here are all the Fire Prevention Resources in one spot.)
HERE you will find this Smoke Alarm Safety Sheet for kids, along with other games, videos and information to share with your children. Save them Print them out. Practice with your children. They’ll enjoy being big helpers and learning more.
For even more fire fun for kids, head on over to Sparky.org for more printables and interactive games.
Reproduced from NFPA's Fire Prevention Week website, www.firepreventionweek.org. ©2014 NFPA
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