With daylight-savings time upon us, it's a good time to check our home smoke alarms.
We follow the lead of The American Red Cross in urging families in the community to check their smoke alarms and to follow fire prevention tips.
It's proven that properly-installed and maintained smoke alarms save lives every day across this country. When taking time to adjust clocks to the time change, also take a few more minutes to check fire alarm batteries.
In 2012, the state of Ohio recorded an unofficial number of 106 fire deaths. Residents can take simple actions to reduce the risk of a home fire tragedy by installing and maintaining a smoke alarm on every level of their home, inside bedrooms and outside sleeping areas. Smoke alarms provide us with a few minutes of advance warning in the event of a home fire and the extra time can save lives.
Additional recommendations include:
* Check smoke alarms monthly by pushing the test button.
* Change the batteries in your alarms at least once a year. Install a new battery immediately if an alarm chirps, warning that the battery is low.
* Teach children what the smoke alarm sounds like and what to do when they hear it.
* Never disable a smoke alarm.
The American Red Cross also recommends that families create and practice a home fire escape plan. Fire escape plans should include at least two escape routes for every room in the home. Families should choose a convenient meeting place outside of the home and practice their escape plan at least twice a year.
It's also a convenient time to check those carbon monoxide detectors, or look into purchasing one for your home.
Unintentional CO exposure accounts for an estimated 15,000 emergency department visits and 500 unintentional deaths in the United States each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and prevention.
For more Red Cross fire safety and preparedness information visit www.redcross.org/homefires.
Doing something as simple as checking the batteries could prove to be a life saver. We encourage you to add that to your checklist.