Reminder to Change Clocks, Smoke Detector Batteries


Daylight-savings time is ending Sunday, Nov. 4, which means it's time to get an extra hour of sleep.

This year's time change is also the 25th anniversary of the "Change Your Clock, Change Your Battery®" program. The event, sponsored by Energizer and the International Association of Fire Chiefs, prompts residents to change the batteries in their smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors at the same time they are changing their clocks.

GrandIsland Fire Chief Cory Schmidt is encouraging everyone to use their extra hour to change the batteries in smoke and carbonmonoxide detectors and test to make sure the devices are in operationalorder. The Grand Island Fire Department reminds citizens this one easystep can save the lives of family, friends, and neighbors.

Schmidtsaid, "The Grand Island Fire Department can't stress enough the importance ofensuring smoke detectors are in working order. This begins by testingsmoke detectors at least once a month and changing batteries once a year.A great way to remember to change the batteries is to do so at the same timeyou set your clocks back."

The U.S. Fire Administration reports that approximately 3,500 people die eachyear as a result of home fires, with most of these deaths occurring in homeswithout smoke detectors. According to reports by the Fire Analysis andResearch Division of the National Fire Protection Association those most atrisk include:

  • Children-- Home fires kill 500 children ages 14 and under each year. Eighty percent of child fire fatalities occur in homes without working smoke alarms.
  • Seniors--Adults 75 and older are 2.8 times more likely to die in a home fire.

TheGrand Island Fire Department recommends putting smoke detectors in eachbedroom, in the hallway outside bedrooms, and on every floor.Additionally, the International Association of Fire Chiefs recommends smokedetectors in homes be replaced every 10 years; furthermore, having bothionization and photo electric smoke alarms are the best way to alert people toall types of home fires.

The Grand Island Fire Department has taken grant money in the amount of around $91,000 and helped to provide smoke detectors toresidents who live in mobile homes and who are 65 and older. So far 3,800smoke detectors have been installed in 350 mobile homes and 400 homes withresidents who are 65 years and older.

The Grand Island Fire Department will take calls to help anyone that has questions about testing, replacing batteries, or other concerns relating to smoke detectors. To reach the fire department, call 308.385.5444 ext. 220.

For more informationabout the "Change Your Clock Change Your Battery" program, call314-727-5700 ext. 108.

Inaddition to testing smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, Schmidt also encouragescitizens to take time this weekend to plan and practice home fire escape routesand prepare a fire safety kit which includes flashlights and fresh batteries.