Wichita Fire Department (WFD) officials are reminding residents to test their smoke alarms and install new batteries this weekend. The time will spring forward one hour at 2 a.m. on Sunday, March 8th.
Most fire deaths occur in homes which do not have a working smoke alarms. Last year, nearly 2,500 people lost their lives in home fires, according to the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA).
“It is important that residents change their smoke alarm batteries during the time change,” WFD Fire Chief Ronald D. Blackwell said. “Test your smoke alarms monthly and practice fire drills with your family. Smoke alarms and fire drills are proven to save lives.”
The WFD is providing free smoke alarms and batteries to home owners who do not have one, thanks to a partnership with the Safe Kids Coalition, Shelter Insurance, Tyco SimplexGrinnell and Interstate All-Pack Batteries. Firefighters will install them at no cost. Residents should call the WFD at 268-4441 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to set up an appointment. Firefighters will also test existing smoke alarms for residents. Most smoke alarms need to be replaced after 10 years of use.
For future information regarding smoke alarms and fire safety, please call 268-4441, visit www.wichita.gov, or find the WFD on Facebook.