Smoke detectors save lives

Published 9:02 am Thursday, October 8, 2015

Half of all house fire deaths result from fires reported when most people are asleep, according to the National Fire Prevention Association.

It is a sobering statistic, especially when considering something as simple as installing a smoke alarm in the right place could prevent many of those deaths.

That is why during Fire Prevention Week (Oct. 4-10), the National Fire Prevention Association is spreading the word about the importance of properly placing smoke alarms.

You might have seen the slogan, “Hear the beep where you sleep” on message boards outside area fire stations.

What does it mean?

Well, the National Fire Prevention Association recommends the installation of smoke alarms in every bedroom, outside each sleeping area, and on every level of your home, including the basement. Large homes may need even more detectors.

That way, even if you are sound asleep, a smoke alarm will be close enough to wake you in the event of a fire.

Since fires can spread quickly, every second matters when you are trying to get out alive.

In fact, the National Fire Prevention Association says having a working alarm at home decreases the chances of dying by half.

Getting a smoke alarm and installing it isn’t that difficult either.

Many fire stations actually give smoke detectors away for free to homeowners as supplies last, including Niles City and Niles Township fire departments.

The Dowagiac, Cassopolis and Edwardsburg fire departments are also giving away free detectors during National Fire Prevention Week thanks to a donation from SERVPRO.

Residents should call the station before going to make sure they have detectors in stock.

Firefighters can also answer questions about where to place smoke detectors.

We encourage everyone to take advantage of this important and potentially life saving resource.

After all, the safety of our loved ones should be our No. 1 priority.


Opinions expressed are those of the editorial board consisting of Publisher Michael Caldwell and editors Ambrosia Neldon, Craig Haupert, Ted Yoakum and Scott Novak.