According to the National Fire Protection Association, three of every five home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes with no smoke alarms.
Properly working smoke alarms can provide people with early warnings that can mean a difference between life and death when evacuating from a fire.
The El Paso Fire Department Fire Prevention Division provides, at no cost, smoke detectors, assistance with evacuation plans, home/work safety surveys and fire extinguisher training.
Additionally, EPFD has the following safety advice for residents regarding smoke alarms:
- Place a smoke alarm on every level of your home and inside sleeping areas
- Smoke alarms should be tested monthly. Press the test button to be sure the alarm is working.
- Batteries should be replaced yearly, or as soon as you hear a low-battery warning which usually sounds like a “chirping” noise.
- Teach children what the smoke alarm sounds like and what to do when they hear it.
- Keep smoke alarms clean by vacuuming over and around it regularly. Dust and debris can interfere with its operation.
- Never remove the battery from or disable a smoke alarm. If your smoke alarm is sounding “nuisance alarms”, try locating it further from kitchens or bathrooms.
- Plan regular fire drills to practice your escape plan ensuring everyone in your home knows what to do when the smoke alarm sounds.
- People with hearing impairments can use special alarms. These alarms have strobe lights and bed shakers.
- Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old.