Change Your Clock, Check Your Smoke Alarm
November 04, 2011
Alaska State Fire Marshal David Tyler reminds Alaskans to check their smoke alarms when they change their clock from Daylight Savings Time on November 6th. For the last two years 59% of fatal fires in Alaska had no working smoke alarms in the structure. In another 21% it could not be determined if smoke alarms were present and operating.
Many homes have smoke alarms with 9-volt batteries that should be replaced at least once annually. Daylight Savings Time serves as a reminder to check smoke alarms and change 9-volt batteries. With the development of long-life lithium battery powered smoke alarms, the batteries have a life span of up to 10 years, so you may not need to replace this type of battery as often. "The key is to take a few minutes to check, test and clean your smoke alarm to make sure it is functioning properly, and what better time to do this than when you change your clock from Daylight Savings Time", Tyler said.
Alaskans can go to The Alaska Division of Fire and Life Safety's web site at www.akburny.com and click on a "smoke alarm reminder" link. On this site they can sign up for a free monthly e-mail reminder to check their smoke alarms.
It is important to remember that manufacturer's guidelines for smoke alarm installation, testing, cleaning, and replacing batteries should be followed. However, general recommendations are as follows:
• Install smoke alarms in every room except kitchen and bathrooms.
Alaska State Fire Marshal David Tyler adds, "Safe behavior can keep a fire from starting. Working smoke alarms, planning and practicing your fire escape plan and adding residential fire suppression sprinklers can ensure your family's safety in case of a devastating home fire".
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