Change Your Clock, Change Your Smoke Alarm
Category : Fire Safety
Statistics show a working smoke alarm reduces the likelihood of death in a house fire by 60 per cent. Daylight savings ends on Sunday 7 April, and CFA is encouraging everyone to change their smoke alarm battery when they turn back their clocks. CFA Westernport Area Manager Community Safety, Mr Dave Baker, said smoke alarms give an early warning sign to alert occupants, giving them time to take action and evacuate – but only if they work.
“A household fire can spread and engulf a home in the blink of an eye, destroying property, personal possession and most importantly – lives,” said Mr Baker.
“Last year, 28 per cent of Victoria’s house fires were located in CFA Westernport Area, which equates to 357 individual house fires – the largest number in the state.
“Firefighters witness horrific house fires every year and sadly, not everyone gets out safely. Last year 22 lives were lost to household fires in Victoria, and tragically in many cases working smoke alarms were not present.
“We’re urging everyone to change their clock, and change their smoke alarm battery this Easter and ensure your smoke alarm is operating efficiently and potentially save lives.”
CFA recommend that all residents replace their smoke alarm batteries with long-lasting alkaline batteries and be aware all smoke alarms have a lifespan of approximately 10 years. It is advised that you check your smoke alarm for the service date (the date when the alarm may no longer work) indicated on the base of each smoke alarm and replace it accordingly, regardless of use.
Smoke Alarm Safety Tips:
- Only purchase smoke alarms that carry the Australian Standards symbol.
- Install smoke alarms outside the sleeping areas on every level of your house and where people sleep with their doors closed; install a smoke alarm in the bedroom.
- Test smoke alarms monthly and replace batteries yearly.
- Clean smoke alarms every year by vacuuming the sensing chamber.
- Try to avoid locating smoke alarms near cooking appliances and bathrooms. Smoke alarms are very sensitive and will activate with the smallest amount of smoke or steam