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Press Release

Press Release Fire Officials Ask People to Change Your Clock, Check Your Alarms This Weekend

Fire officials urge the public to test their smoke and CO alarms and replace alarms that are more than 10 years old
For immediate release:
3/05/2018
  • Department of Fire Services

Media Contact for Fire Officials Ask People to Change Your Clock, Check Your Alarms This Weekend

Jennifer Mieth, Public Information Officer

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STOW“This weekend as you change your clocks, check your alarms,” said State Fire Marshal Peter Ostroskey. “Prevent that annoying chirp of a dying smoke alarm battery by replacing the alkaline batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms now, unless you have newer alarms with 10-year sealed batteries,” said State Fire Marshal Ostroskey. He added, “Check the age of your alarms. Smoke alarms need to be replaced after ten years usually, and carbon monoxide alarms usually after 5-7.”

Time Is Your Enemy in a Fire
“Time is your enemy in a fire and working smoke alarms give you precious time to use your home escape plan before poisonous gases and heat make escape impossible.” said Ostroskey, “Remember: smoke alarms are a sound you can live with.”

Replace Aging Smoke Alarms
“Smoke alarms, like other household appliances, don’t last forever,” said Chief David Mottor, president of the Fire Chiefs’ Association of Massachusetts, “Every ten years the entire alarm needs to be replaced, not just the batteries,” he added. The state fire code requires replacement battery-operated smoke alarms to have 10-year, sealed, non-replaceable, non-rechargeable batteries in older one- and two-family homes. Mottor said, “Fire officials hope that if we make smoke alarms easier for people to maintain, they will take care of them. We see too many disabled smoke alarms in fires when people really needed them to work.”

Senior SAFE
Two hundred forty-one (241) fire departments across the state have grant-funded Senior SAFE Programs. Seniors who need help testing, maintaining or replacing smoke alarms should contact their local fire department or senior center for assistance. Ostroskey said, “Four out of every ten of the people who have died in fires last year were over 65. We want our seniors to be safe from fire in their own homes.”

Working Smoke Alarms Are a Sound You Can Live With
Mottor said “No one expects to be a victim of a fire, but the best way to survive one that does occur is to have working smoke alarms.” In the average house fire, there are only 1-3 minutes to escape AFTER the smoke alarm sounds. He added, “Take a few minutes to protect those you love by changing the batteries in your smoke alarms this weekend. Then take a step stool and some 9-volts to your parents or older neighbor’s and ask if you can refresh their smoke alarms.”

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Media Contact for Fire Officials Ask People to Change Your Clock, Check Your Alarms This Weekend

Department of Fire Services 

The Department of Fire Services provides training for firefighters, fire prevention, fire code enforcement, education to the general public, and oversees fire investigations through the Office of the State Fire Marshal. We support the fire service in the protection of life and property, promote and enhance firefighter safety, and provide fire service leadership through policy and legislation.

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