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Working Smoke Alarms Save Lives

Firefighter standing in front of a fire truck holds a fire alarm

March 6, 2020

Surrey, BC – With the clocks springing ahead this weekend, the Surrey Fire Service would like to remind you to take the time to ensure your smoke alarm is working by pushing the test button. Over time these life saving devices can lose their effectiveness if not checked regularly to ensure it is working as designed.  Smoke alarms are a key part of a home fire escape plan. During a fire, smoke spreads quickly. Working smoke alarms provide an early warning and can be the difference between life and death.

The following are tips to keep your family safe:

  • Install smoke alarms on each level of your home. Especially outside of sleeping areas.
  • It is best to use interconnected smoke alarms. When one smoke alarm sounds, they all sound.
  • Larger homes may need extra smoke alarms
  • Test all smoke alarms at least once a month. Press the test button to be sure the alarm is working.
  • Current alarms on the market employ different types of technology including multi-sensing, which could include smoke and carbon monoxide combined.
  • A smoke alarm should be on the ceiling or high on a wall. Keep smoke alarms away from the kitchen to reduce false alarms. They should be at least 10 feet (3 metres) from the stove.
  • Alarms with strobe lights and bed shakers are available for people who are deaf or hard-of-hearing.
  • Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old.

A report issued in January 2019 by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), found that “the risk of dying in reported home structure fires is 54% lower in homes with working smoke alarms than in homes with no alarms or none that worked”.

To book a confidential visit to assess your fire risk and test your smoke alarm, visit www.surrey.ca/homesafe.

Media inquiries:

Shelley Morris
Assistant Chief
Surrey Fire Service
City of Surrey
604-543-6705
scmorris@surrey.ca