The City of Titusville, Florida / Fire & Emergency Services / NewsSpring Forward And Change Your Clock--But Also Check Your Fire ProtectionFriday, March 07, 2008
SPRING FORWARD THIS WEEKEND--BUT, ALSO CHECK YOUR FAMILY'S FIRE PROTECTION
Smoke alarms play a vital role in reducing deaths and injuries from fire and have contributed to the almost 50% decrease in fire deaths since the late 1970s. Properly installed and maintained smoke alarms save lives and protect against injury and loss due to fire.
This weekend when you move your clocks forward, take some extra time to continue to protect your family. Follow these tips from the National Fire Protection Association:
- Test your smoke alarms once a month, following the manufacturer's instructions.
- Replace the batteries in your smoke alarms at least once a year or sooner if the alarm "chirps", warning that the battery is slow.
- Never "borrow" a battery from a smoke alarm. Smoke alarms can't warn you of fire if their batteries are missing or have been disconnected.
- Don't disable smoke alarms even temporarily. If your smoke detector is sounding "nuisance alarms," try relocating it farther from the kitchen or bathrooms where cooking fumes or steam can cause the alarm to sound.
- Regularly vacuuming or dusting your smoke alarms will keep them working properly.
- Smoke alarms don't last forever. Replace yours once every 10 years or even sooner if recommended by the manufacturer.
- Those who are deaf or hard of hearing cannot depend on the sound of the regular alarm. Install special alarms for them.
- Recent tests reveal that children, because of the depth of their sleep and other differences in sleep patterns from adults, may not awaken when conventional smoke alarms sound. Insure detectors are place within their bedrooms and evaluate purchasing alternate alarms that are now being produced for children.
- Consider installing smoke alarms with "long-life" (10 year) batteries.
- Plan regular fire drills to ensure that everyone knows exactly what to do when the smoke alarm sounds. Hold drills at night to make sure that sleeping family members react in the correct manner that will save their lives.