It’s time to spring ahead again at 2:00 AM on Sunday, March 10, 2013.
Putting your clocks forward means you will lose an hour, but for many of us the later sunset means more daylight while we are awake.
As the time change approaches, Snohomish County Fire District 7 encourages citizens to make another change that could save their lives – checking the batteries in their smoke alarms.
“Smoke alarms save lives by giving people the early warning they need to get out safely,” explained Public Educator Autumn Waite. “A properly installed and maintained smoke alarm is the only thing in your home that can alert you and your family to a fire 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”
Fire District 7 offers the following smoke alarm safety tips:
- Replace batteries in all smoke alarms at least once a year. If an alarm “chirps,” warning the battery is low, replace the battery right away.
- Replace all smoke alarms, including alarms that use 10-year batteries and hard-wired alarms, when they are 10 years old or sooner if they do not respond properly.
- Install smoke alarms in every bedroom, outside each separate sleeping area and on every level of the home, including the basement. Interconnect all smoke alarms throughout the home. When one sounds, they all sound.
- Test alarms at least monthly by pushing the test button.
- Smoke rises; install smoke alarms following manufacturer's instructions high on a wall or on a ceiling. Save manufacturer's instructions for testing and maintenance.
- Be sure the smoke alarm has the label of a recognized testing laboratory.
- Alarms that are hard-wired must be installed by a qualified electrician.
- Finally, prepare and practice an escape plan so that you and your loved ones can get out of your home safely should there be a fire. Plan to meet in a place a safe distance from the fire and where first responders can easily see you.