The Washington Times-Herald

November 5, 2013

'Time' to 'Change' smoke detector


The Washington Times-Herald

---- — The Indiana State Fire Marshal’s office is urging Hoosiers to change their batteries in their smoke alarms.

“The annual change from Daylight Saving Time to Standard Time is a good reminder to make sure your smoke alarms are working and have new batteries,” said Indiana State Fire Marshal James Greeson. “So far this year, there have been 65 fire fatalities in Indiana and the majority of those occurred in homes with no working smoke alarm. There’s no question that working smoke alarms save lives.”

Greeson urges all Indiana residents to make sure you have at least one working smoke detector. He notes they are relatively inexpensive and many fire stations and organizations offer free smoke alarms, especially to low-income families, seniors, at-risk families or families with members who, for various reasons, may need extra time to get out of a home.

The best advice is to have a smoke alarm outside of each sleeping area. At the minimum, there should be one alarm on each floor of the home, including the basement. Here are more tips to consider:

• Test all smoke alarms every month to ensure they are working properly;

• Purchase long-life smoke alarms with lithium-powered batteries. Regular batteries should be changed at least once a year, preferably twice.

• Replace any smoke alarms that are more than 10 years old;

• Occasionally remove any dust from the front of the smoke alarm;

• Devise a family escape plan and practice it at least every six months. Your plan should include at least two different ways each family member could escape various parts of the house. Designate a special place outside of the home where family members are to meet after escaping a fire; and

• For those renting a home or apartment, it is the landlord’s responsibility to have at least one working smoke alarm and it’s the law.