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According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), almost all households in the U.S. have at least one smoke alarm. Yet in 2003-2006, smoke alarms were present in only two-thirds (69%) of all reported home fires and operated in just under half (47%) of the reported home fires. Forty percent of all home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes with no smoke alarms, while 23% resulted from homes in which smoke alarms were present but did not operate. The death rate per 100 reported fires was twice as high in homes without a working smoke alarm as it was in home fires with this protection.
Modern building code requires smoke alarms be installed in all residential occupancies. Local ordinances maintain similar requirements for existing occupancies. Given the laws and statistics Florence Fire/EMS Department reminds residents to ensure they have working smoke alarms installed in their homes.
Smoke alarms should be installed according to the manufacturer’s instructions. For maximum protections smoke alarms should be interconnected and installed on each level of the residence as well as inside and outside of each sleeping area. Smoke alarms should be tested at regular intervals to ensure they are functioning properly. Residents are encouraged to test their smoke alarms at least once a month. Don't forget to change your smoke detector batteries when you change your clocks.
Each year, Florence Fire/EMS Department targets an area for a ‘Smoke Detector Blitz.’ During this blitz fire department personnel, with assistance from the Florence Volunteers In Police Service (VIPS) distribute approximately 100 smoke detectors and batteries. For more information about the annual Smoke Detector Blitz contact Fire Marshal Robert Krebs.