CAL FIRE recommends checking smoke alarms

California Department of Forestry and Fire ProtectionNovember 1, 2013 

To help reduce the number of home fire fatalities, CAL FIRE is reminding all Californians to make sure they have working smoke alarms in their homes. Nearly two-thirds of home fire deaths result from fires in homes with no working smoke alarms.

A little attention to these important life saving devices can go a long way in increasing your chance of surviving a devastating fire. “Smoke alarms give you and your family an early warning when there is a fire so you can quickly escape to safety,” stated California State Fire Marshal Tonya Hoover. “Making sure you have a working smoke alarms in your home will help keep you, your family and guests safe.” Smoke alarm safety tips:

* Place properly installed and maintained smoke alarms both inside and outside of sleeping areas and on every level of your home.

* Interconnected smoke alarms are best, because if one sounds, they all sound.

* Get smoke alarms that can sound fast to all types of fires. CAL FIRE recommends that every residence and place where people sleep be equipped with ionization and photoelectric smoke alarms or dual sensor smoke alarms, which contain both ionization and photoelectric smoke sensors.

* Inspect, test and clean smoke alarms and change alkaline batteries at least once every year, or when the alarm signals (“chirps”) the end of the battery life. You can use a date you already know, like your birthday or when you change your clocks as a reminder.

* Follow manufacturer’s instructions if you have a 10-year smoke alarm which uses a long-life lithium battery.

* Never paint over a smoke alarm.

* Replace your smoke alarm at least every ten years.

* Practice exit drills so everyone understands what to do when they hear a smoke alarm.

* Keep your smoke alarm working, NEVER REMOVE BATTERIES FROM YOUR ALARM.

For more information on smoke alarms, please visit the CAL FIRE’s website at http://www.fire.ca.gov/communications/communications_firesafety_smokealarms.php.

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