Residents living in Inyo, Mono, and San Bernardino counties interested in a fire prevention program email preston.fouts@fire.ca.gov

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Spring Forward Into Fire Safety

It’s that time again, time to spring forward into daylight savings time. This Sunday, March 11, 2012 will be the time to set your clocks forward one hour. It is also time to replace the batteries in your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. It may seem like a bother, but it is one of the most cost effective forms of life safety insurance that you can have. On March 3rd of this year, two adults and two children died in an early morning house fire in Ohio. Fire investigators were quoted as saying “No working smoke detectors were found.”

Did you know that 96% of the homes in the United States have smoke detectors but that in 23% of these homes the smoke detectors don’t work, primarily because of missing or dead batteries. Here in California, we have all witnessed the incredible wildland fires and extreme flames that sometimes reach to more than 200 feet in height. Yet as dangerous and deadly as these fires can be, 83% of civilian fire fatalities in the United States happen in home fires. Fires are one of the leading causes of death for children and the majority of those killed die in home fires. The peak hours for deadly home fires are between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. when people are most vulnerable. The deadly fire last week in Ohio occurred at 3:30 a.m.

Carbon monoxide is a silent killer and California Law requires homeowners to install carbon monoxide detectors in every California home. Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless, odorless gas that is produced from heaters, fireplaces, furnaces and many types of appliances and cooking devices.

CAL FIRE San Bernardino Unit Chief Tim McClelland says “for the cost of a few batteries, you can protect your family from the dangers of fire and carbon monoxide. It’s an investment in safety, it’s an investment in life.”

For more information about smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors you can go to www.fire.ca.gov. or http://www.nfpa.org.