“Saving your life can be as simple as checking your smoke alarms,” says Mayor Billy Barlow. "Properly placed and working smoke alarms alert residents to a fire, and gives them the best chance of exiting the home without injury."
The NFPA reports that working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in a home fire in half. Research has also demonstrated that photoelectric smoke alarms are more effective at warning people of smoke from smoldering fires. Ionization smoke alarms are quicker to alert for flaming fires. With earlier warning, people have more time to escape a burning structure and to call 911.
The Oswego Fire Department recommends installing a “combination” (photoelectric and ionization) smoke alarm inside of every bedroom, outside of every sleeping area, and on every level of your home. Smoke alarms should be mounted according to manufacturer instructions.
“You should also install carbon monoxide alarms in your home and check them once a month,” says Fire Chief Randy Griffin. Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless, poisonous gas that causes death. Carbon monoxide alarms are designed to alert residents before potentially life-threatening levels of carbon monoxide are released.
Chief Griffin stressed that "all alarms and batteries expire, and need to be replaced from time to time." Smoke alarms are only good for 10 years from the date on the back panel, and carbon monoxide alarms are good for only 5-7 years. Some alarms are sealed units, and come with a 10 year battery. Other batteries need to be changed out every 6 months, and replaced with batteries within the expiration date.
Having smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms properly placed and that work 24 hours a day greatly increases your chance of survival. Residents in need of additional smoke alarms, carbon monoxide alarms, or batteries can call the Oswego Fire Department for assistance at (315) 343-2161 to schedule an appointment for a home visit.
Stay Safe Oswego!