Submitted by FASNY
Fire Prevention Week is upon us, and the Firemen's Association of the State of New York is reminding all New Yorkers of the importance of having working smoke alarms throughout their homes. This year's fire prevention theme, from the National Fire Protection Association - "Hear the Beep Where You Sleep" - is an effort to ensure that people have working smoke alarms installed in their bedrooms.
According to the NFPA, about half of all fire deaths occur during the typical sleeping hours of 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. All too often, people are woken up by fire and smoke rather than the beep of a smoke alarm, and have little chance of a safe escape. The NFPA recommends having smoke alarms installed in every bedroom, outside each separate sleeping area, and on every level of your home, including the basement. Further NFPA research demonstrates that two thirds of all fire deaths occur in homes without smoke alarms or working smoke alarms.
"Smoke alarms are the single most important appliance in your home," said FASNY President Robert McConville. "Though every week is Fire Prevention Week for firefighters, we ask the public to take this time to ensure their homes are properly fitted with working smoke alarms. This is the most critical step we all can take to avoid tragedy."
FASNY is supporting state legislation that would require that all smoke alarms sold in New York State to be equipped with sealed-in, non-removable batteries capable of powering the device for at least ten years. This legislation, sponsored by state Sen. John Flanagan and Assemblymember Joseph Morelle, has passed both the state Senate and Assembly and awaits the Governor's call.
This year's Fire Prevention Week campaign includes the following smoke alarm precautions to take:
•Install smoke alarms in every bedroom, outside each separate sleeping area and on every level of the home, including the basement.
•Interconnect all smoke alarms throughout the home. This way, when one sounds, they all do.
•Test alarms at least monthly by pushing the test button.
•Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old or sooner if they don't respond properly.
•Make sure everyone in the home knows the sound of the smoke alarm and understands what to do when they hear it.
To learn more about smoke alarms and "Hear the Beep Where You Sleep", visit NFPA's website atwww.nfpa.org/safety-information/fire-prevention-week.