Wichita Fire Department (WFD) officials are reminding residents to test their smoke alarms and install new batteries this weekend. The time will spring ahead one hour at 2 a.m. on Sunday, March 10.
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, Scholfield Automobile Dealerships and Interstate All-Pack Batteries. Firefighters will install the smoke alarms at no cost. Residents can call Safe Kids for information at 689-5700 or call 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.
More than 66 percent of home fire deaths nationwide occurred when a working smoke alarm was not present, according to recent data. Most smoke alarms need to be replaced after 10 years of use.
“This is a great time to test your smoke alarms and replace your 9-volt battery to ensure your smoke alarms are working properly,” Fire Chief Ronald D. Blackwell said. “A working smoke alarm increases your chance of surviving a fire by alerting you and your family early, before conditions in your home deteriorate. Smoke alarms should be placed in the vicinity of your living space and bedrooms.”
For future information or questions regarding smoke alarms or fire prevention safety, please call 268-4441, visit www.wichita.gov, or find WFD on Facebook.