Safety Tips

Smoke Detectors

Smoke detectors are an inexpensive method used to save lives during a fire.  A fire can spread quickly through your house leaving you with very little time to escape.  Your ability to safely escape a burning home depends on the advance warning of a smoke alarm.

  • 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.
  • 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 to monthly tests.


When a Fire Starts

If your smoke detector sounds, or you smell smoke, stay low the ground. Heat and smoke rise, therefore, the air is clearer and near the floor. Feel the door with the back of your hand, if the door is cool, stay low and open the door slowly. Crawl low under any smoke to make your exit. Head for the closest exit from the home, closing all doors behind you. If the door is hot, do not open it; seek an alternate exit such as another door or window. If you are on the second floor, use an escape ladder, do not jump. Hang full-length before you drop, this lessens the distance between you and the ground. If you don't have a ladder, wait next to the window for help to arrive. Place a white or light colored cloth near the window to alert firefighters of your presence. Never re-enter a burning building once you leave. Call 911 from a neighbor's house. Stay calm!