The Wichita Fire Department (WFD) is reminding residents to use daylight saving time this weekend as an opportunity to test their home smoke alarms and replace the batteries. The time will fall back one hour at 2 a.m. on Sunday, Nov. 4.
In 2011, more than 62 percent of home fire deaths nationwide occurred when a working smoke alarm was not present, according to the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA).
“Please test your smoke alarms and replace batteries,” WFD Fire Chief Ronald D. Blackwell said. “Working smoke alarms dramatically increase your chance of surviving a fire. Smoke alarms should be placed in the vicinity of your living space and bedrooms.”
WFD recommends the following additional safety tips: install smoke alarms on every level of a home, including the basement; make certain everyone in the family understands the warning of the smoke alarm and knows how to respond; test alarms once a month using the test button; and practice an escape plan in case a fire occurs.
Thanks to a partnership with the Safe Kids Coalition, Scholfield Automobile Dealerships and Interstate All-Pack Batteries, residents can obtain free smoke alarms and batteries as well as have them installed at no cost. Call fire prevention (268-4441) between 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to set up an appointment. Firefighters will also test existing smoke alarms for residents.
For more fire-prevention information, please call 268-4441, visit www.wichita.gov, or find the WFD on Facebook.