It’s Fire Prevention Week: Check your smoke alarms

For your safety and that of your family, test all the smoke alarms in your home to be sure they work properly. Image courtesy of the NM Energy$mart Academy

National Fire Prevention Week is this week. Every year we at the Fermilab Fire Department take advantage of this week to remind the Fermilab community about the need to be diligent and to develop good habits concerning fire safety at home and at work.

Nearly 3,000 people a year die in fires in the United States. The vast majority of these tragedies are preventable with a just small amount of effort.

One of the best things people can do to reduce these unfortunate statistics is to purchase, install and maintain smoke detectors in their homes. Having a working smoke detector can cut the risk of a fatal fire in the home in half. On average, three out of five home fire deaths occur either where no smoke detectors are present or when the installed units do not work or sound properly. In 23 percent of home fire deaths, smoke alarms were present but failed to sound.

The National Fire Protection Agency and the Fermilab Fire Department recommend that you:

  • Install smoke detectors inside every bedroom, outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home, including the basement.
  • Test all smoke alarms every month by using the test button.
  • Replace batteries in every unit once a year.
  • Replace all smoke alarms every 10 years or earlier if they fail to respond properly when tested.

Remember that working smoke alarms save lives. Do your part to keep you and your families safe.

Lieutenant John Babinec, Fermilab Fire Department