Monday, 15 October 2012

Change your clocks - Check your smoke alarm!

The Fire Kills campaign is reminding people that we should all be testing our smoke alarms when we’re changing our clocks on the weekend of Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 October – it could save your life!

The twice-yearly clock change is a task that everybody takes for granted. Turning the clocks back for an extra hour in bed will already be on the ‘to-do’ list for the majority of British households over the clock change weekend.

But while timekeeping is a vital part of our lives and we all keep our clocks working, it’s shocking to know that many people forget to ensure the safety of themselves and their loved ones by keeping their smoke alarm in the same working order.

A working smoke alarm can buy you valuable time to get out, stay out and call 999.  But just half of all householders who own a smoke alarm say that they test it’s working on a regular basis.

You’re more than four times as likely to die in a fire if your smoke alarm is not working. So it’s clear that the simple act of testing your alarm is a vital part of any household routine.

Dave Sheppard, East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service Borough Commander for Eastbourne, said:

“Everyone soon notices when a clock stops ticking, but it’s not so easy to be sure that your smoke alarm is still in working order. Whether the battery is flat, has been used for a kid’s toy or the connection is loose, everyone should take the time to test their smoke alarm.  

You’re more than four times as likely to die in a fire without a working smoke alarm, but only half of people who own an alarm say they take the time to check it regularly.

“We’re all looking forward to getting that extra hours sleep at the end of British Summer Time, but knowing that your smoke alarm is in working order could help you sleep that little bit better. As you put your clocks back on the 28th or 29th, remember to also push the button on your smoke alarm – it could save your life.

Help keep yourself and your loved ones safe in the home by following these simple steps:

       A working smoke alarm can buy you valuable time to get out, stay out and call 999.
       Make sure you fit one on every level of your home and test them regularly.
      Make testing your smoke alarm part of your household routine. Check the alarm by pressing the button regularly; change your battery once a year or invest in a 10-year alarm; and clean the alarm casing twice a year to ensure dust isn't blocking the sensor.
      Whatever happens, never remove the battery in your smoke alarm.
      Make sure that everyone in your home knows what to do in a fire and practise your escape route.
      For more information visit the Fire Kills campaign’s Facebook page at

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