Fire Chiefs Remind Families To Change Batteries

STATE – Daylight Savings Time ends on Sunday, Nov. 2, and the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) is reminding families to change the batteries in their smoke and carbon monoxide detectors at the same time they change their clocks.

Serving as a reminder since 1987, the Change Your Clock Change Your Battery program began as a pilot program in St. Louis and Atlanta, and now incorporates more than 6,100 fire departments. “Hundreds of fatalities occur every year when individuals neglect to ensure their smoke detectors have fresh batteries. The habit of changing batteries during this campaign is a simple step that can help save the lives of so many families each year,” says Chief Larry J. Grorud, CFO, MIFireE, and president of the International Association of Fire Chiefs.

The IAFC reports that while 96 percent of American homes have at least one smoke alarm, 19 percent of those detectors are not working, mostly due to missing or dead batteries. On average, home fires kill 540 children, 14 and under each year.

A working smoke detector can provide crucial extra seconds to escape a burning home. Eighty percent of home fire deaths result from fires in homes without working smoke alarms.

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