The Columbus Fire Department reminds residents to change your smoke alarm batteries as you set your clocks for the end of daylight savings time this Sunday. Daylight savings time will end at 2:00 a.m. on Sunday, November 1, 2020. Clocks will  turn back from 2:00 a.m. to 1:00 a.m. This is a great time for families to take a simple step that can protect lives and save property.

“Smoke alarms save lives, and every home should have at least 1 working smoke alarm,” says Columbus Fire Chief Andy Lay . “Working smoke alarms and emergency fire escape planning can increase the likelihood of surviving a fire in the home.”

The Columbus Fire Department recommends that all residents inspect their smoke alarms this weekend and ensure that they are in working order. Smoke alarms that are older than 10 years should be replaced with new smoke alarms.  A smoke alarm’s manufacture date is typically found on the back of the smoke alarm.  If the smoke alarm was manufacture before 2010, the smoke alarm is expired and should be replaced.  9 volt or ten year sealed-battery replacement alarms can be purchased at most local retailers.  Throughout the United States, residential fires increase during the winter months. This is due in part to an increased use of supplemental heating devices. Nationally, many fire fatalities have occurred in homes that did not have working smoke alarms. According  to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), “Almost three of every five home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes with no smoke alarms (40%) or no smoke alarms that were working (17%).”  Source: NFPA

In addition to protecting your family through the use of smoke alarms, the Columbus Fire Department recommends reviewing your home fire escape plan with family members. All family members should be aware of what to do if a fire breaks out in the home. If you need assistance in creating a home fire escape plan, or need assistance with smoke alarms, please contact the Columbus Fire Department Fire Prevention Bureau at (812) 376-2679, or visit the Columbus Fire Department Website.

We share the below information on home fire escape planning and smoke alarms:

Home Fire Escape Planning-

  • Smoke alarms sound for a reason. When you hear the beep – think fire.
  • Know two ways out of every room in the home.
  • Get low and go – Crawl below toxic smoke and find an exit.
  • Once outside, stay outside and call 911.
  • Determine a safe meeting place outside the home where all family members will meet.

Smoke Alarms Safety Tips- 

  • If smoke alarms are 10 years old, replace with a new smoke alarm. This includes hardwired alarms with battery back-up systems.
  • Test smoke alarms every month to ensure they are in working order.
  • Replace smoke alarm batteries at least once a year.
  • Install smoke alarms on every level of the home.
  • Smoke alarms should be installed in all sleeping rooms.
  • Bedroom doors should remain shut when sleeping.