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BEEP – BEEP – BEEP – It’s Your Smoke Alarm

It’s Daylight Savings time again. Spring forward one hour this Sunday morning, March 8th, at 2:00am, and rejoice in the feeling that spring is ‘officially’ here.

Those who know me are aware that Daylight Savings is connected to an annual tradition in my home and office. It’s a gentle reminder to change the smoke alarm batteries throughout the house. And with good reason! Studies show that although 85% of dwellings are equipped with smoke alarms, as many as one third of those are not working!

But there is more: Did you know that the smoke alarm itself should be replaced regularly as well? The US Fire Administration (USFA) recommends that homeowners install new smoke alarms every 8 – 10 years.

The major problem with smoke alarms has been their ability to wake you up when you are asleep. And, while the persistent beeping seems to reliably wake up adults, children often sleep right through the alarm, barely stirring to pull their blankets over their heads. If you have kids, consider installing personalized parent-voice smoke alarms. Studies have shown that parent-voice alarms with instructions successfully rouse 96% of children out of deep slumber (compared to 58% with tone alarms) and help them perform better in self-rescue exercises. For maximum protection, record and install parent-voice alarms in addition to conventional tone alarms, talk with your kids about fire safety, and practice fire escape drills.


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