Free Batteries Available to Residents at Fire Department Headquarters
MARION — Chief Brian Jackvony and the Marion Fire Department encourage residents to test their smoke and carbon monoxide detectors when setting their clocks back for daylight saving time, and are offering free 9-volt batteries to residents this season.
Daylight saving time ends on Sunday, Nov. 1, at 2 a.m., and clocks will move back one hour at that time.
The Marion Fire Department has received a grant from Energizer and is offering free 9-volt batteries for Marion residents. Residents interested in receiving 9-volt batteries can pick them up at the Marion Fire Headquarters, 50 Spring St., Marion, during normal business hours.
“When a fire occurs, smoke and flames can spread throughout a building very fast,” Chief Jackvony said. “Working smoke detectors give residents an early warning about a fire so that they can escape as quickly as possible, which is why it is so important to test these devices often and change the batteries regularly. We are also pleased to be able to provide residents with free batteries, and encourage residents to stop by the fire department to pick up new batteries for use.”
According to the International Association of Firefighters (IAFF), working smoke detectors decrease the risk of dying in home fires by nearly half. Additionally, in many reported home fires in which smoke detectors were present but did not operate, the batteries had been removed or the detector was disconnected due to dead battery alerts or nuisance alarms.
The National Fire Protection Association reports that three of every five home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes with no smoke detectors (38%) or no working smoke detectors (21%). Additionally, dead batteries caused one-quarter (24%) of the smoke detector failures.
The Marion Fire Department also asks that all business owners not only change their clocks, but also change the batteries in their smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, and replace the batteries on wall mounted emergency lights and exit signs. All businesses should have emergency backup lighting as a safety feature to provide temporary lighting in case of power failure.
In order to keep your family and home safe, Marion Fire recommends that residents follow safety tips outlined by IAFF:
- Install smoke detectors inside each bedroom, outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home, including the basement. On levels without bedrooms, install detectors in a central location or near the stairway to the upper level. Smoke detectors should be installed at least 10 feet from cooking appliances to minimize false detectors.
- CO detectors should be installed in a central location outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home and in other locations where required by applicable laws, codes or standards. Standard smoke detectors do not detect carbon monoxide.
- CO is known as the invisible killer, it is colorless and odorless. It may also affect adults, children and pets differently.
- For the best protection, interconnect all smoke detectors. When one smoke detector sounds they all sound. CO detectors can also be interconnected.
- Test smoke and CO detectors at least once per month using the test button.
- Smoke detectors with non-replaceable 10-year batteries are designed to remain effective for up to 10 years. If the detector chirps warning that the battery is low, replace the entire smoke detector right away.
- Smoke and CO detectors with replaceable batteries need a new battery at least once per year. Replace batteries during daylight saving time or if the detector chirps warning that the battery is low.
- When replacing a battery, follow the manufacturer’s list of usable batteries on the back of the detector. Manufacturer instructions are specific to the batteries that must be used and the detector may not work properly if a different kind of battery is used.
- Replace all smoke detectors according to the date on the back or when they reach 10 years old. Replace CO detectors according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Make sure everyone in the home understands the sound of a smoke and CO detector and knows how to respond.
The Marion Fire Department would also like to remind residents that carbon monoxide and smoke detectors are not interchangeable and should never be disconnected. The best practice for checking your carbon monoxide and smoke detectors is to do so monthly.
For more information on smoke detector and CO detector safety, visit the IAFF website or contact the Marion Fire Department at 508-748-1177.