News release from the American Red Cross:
Red Cross Reminder: Check Smoke Alarms when Turning Clocks Back
Nationwide home fire campaign aims to reduce the number of home fire deaths, injuries
(October 30, 2015) – Daylight Saving Time ends this weekend and when everyone turns their clocks back, the American Red Cross reminds them to also take these steps to make sure their household is prepared for emergencies.
“It’s important for everyone to make sure their household is ready,” said Katherine Mac Aulay, Executive Director, American Red Cross of Northeast Indiana. “A disaster like a home fire can happen anywhere, at any time. We urge people to take these steps now and know what they should do if an emergency occurs.”
- Check smoke alarm batteries. When turning the clocks ahead, take a few minutes to replace the smoke alarm batteries and push the test button to make sure the alarms are working. It’s also a great time to check carbon monoxide detectors.
- Install smoke alarms. If someone doesn’t have smoke alarms, install them. At a minimum, put one on every level of the home, inside bedrooms and outside sleeping areas. Check local building codes for additional requirements.
- Practice an escape plan. Make sure everyone in the family knows how to get out of every room and how to get out of the home in less than two minutes.
- Get a kit. Keep disaster supplies in an easy-to-carry bag to use at home or carry in case ordered to evacuate.
- Make a plan. Have all household members plan what steps they should take if an emergency occurs.
- Be informed. Learn what emergencies can occur in the area and how officials notify residents should a disaster occur.
RED CROSS APPS
People can learn how to help prevent a home fire and what to do if one occurs by downloading the Red Cross Emergency App. They can use the app’s Family Safe feature to help stay in touch with loved ones. Children can earn points and incentives in a fun, gaming environment while learning how to prevent a home fire and other emergencies in the Monster Guard: Prepare for Emergencies App. The First Aid App provides expert advice including what to do for burns, broken bones, and breathing and cardiac emergencies. The apps can be downloaded for free in app stores or at https://www.redcross.org/get-help/how-to-prepare-for-emergencies/mobile-apps.html.
HOME FIRE CAMPAIGN
Seven times a day someone in this country dies in a fire. The Red Cross has been working to reduce that number through its Home Fire Campaign, credited in its first year with saving several lives and protecting thousands of others by installing new smoke alarms in their homes.
The Home Fire Campaign is a multi-year effort to reduce the number of home fire deaths and injuries by 25 percent. Working with fire departments and community groups across the country, the Red Cross and its partners have installed more than 125,000 smoke alarms in homes across all 50 states.
The Red Cross also is asking every household in America to take the two simple steps that can save lives: checking their existing smoke alarms and practicing fire drills at home.
WHAT PEOPLE CAN DO
People can visit redcross.org/homefires to find out more about how to protect themselves and their loved homes from fire. People can help by donating to Red Cross Disaster Relief by visiting redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Donations to Disaster Relief will be used to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small. We respond to nearly 70,000 other disasters every year, from home fires to wildfires and more. Learn more about how Disaster Relief donations have helped people affected by previous disasters including home fires.
HOME FIRE CAMPAIGN
The campaign is happening all over the country and involves Red Cross workers joining with local fire departments and community groups to visit neighborhoods at high risk for fires. Those visits include educating people about fire safety through door-to-door visits and installation of smoke alarms in some of these neighborhoods.
About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org.