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Make a new year’s resolution: test your smoke alarms every month!
Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service (DWFRS) is asking people to make monthly testing of their smoke alarms one of their New Year’s resolutions. Why not circle the first of every month on your new calendar and tick it off when you have tested your alarms?
Many people see January as an opportunity for a fresh start, and safety should be top of the list. So DWFRS is encouraging everyone to make sure they have enough smoke alarms in their home and that they work. It only takes a few seconds and can save lives.
Working smoke alarms can give someone the few extra seconds they need to escape in a fire. While the majority of homes across the country now have an alarm fitted, most people are not aware that the average alarm has a lifespan of justten years before it needs replacing.
For people who live in a larger property, a single smoke alarm is simply not enough. The recommendation is at least one on the ceiling of every level. Last year, in nearly half of all fires in the home where the smoke alarm did not give a warning, the reason was that the alarm was not close enough to detect the fire. Missing or flat batteries were another major issue.
DWFRSis asking people to make sure that their alarms are up to date and up to the job.
To keep your alarms in working order:
- Make sure there is at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home;
- Test your smoke alarms by pushing the button every month;
- Check that your smoke alarms are less than 10 years old;
- Fit smoke alarms on landings, in hallways and near bedrooms. Also consider in rooms which have electrical appliances – e.g. a heater or charger – or other fire risks;
- Take a moment to check on your loved ones who may need help to ensure they’re fully protected.
At this time of year, many people will be thinking of what they can do - big or small - to make a fresh start and improve their lives, homes and well being. Smoke alarms can offer vital protection for you and your loved ones, but most people simply fit and forget.
For most of us, there is nothing more important than keeping our loved ones safe and secure. So, if your alarm is getting past its best or your top floor is missing an alarm of its own, make your New Year’s resolution to fit new ones, test them on the first of every month and protect your loved ones.
For more information, visit the Dorset & Wiltshire Fire Service website.