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Fire Prevention Week Oct. 5-11

By Staff | Oct 10, 2014

Jefferson County Homeland Security and Emergency Management (JCHSEM) wants to ensure that all residences, businesses, and organizations are prepared in the event of a fire. The best way to be prepared for a fire is to prevent and reduce the risks and behaviors that cause life loss and property damage.

Fire Prevention Week was created in 1922 as commemoration of the great Chicago Fire of Oct. 8-9, 1871. Fire Prevention Week is observed on the Sunday through Saturday period in which October 9th falls. Every year since 1927, Fire Prevention Week has had a theme, and this year’s theme is, “Working Smoke Alarms Save Lives, Test yours Every Month!”. Fire Prevention Week is the longest running public health and safety observance on record.

According to the National Fire Protection Association’s Fire Prevention Week website: (www.firepreventionweek.org)

Smoke Detector Facts

Almost three of five (60%) of reported home fire deaths in 2007 to 2011 resulted from fires in homes with no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms.

Working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in reported home fires in half.

In fires considered large enough to activate the smoke alarm, hardwired alarms operated 93% of the time, while battery powered alarms operated only 79% of the time.

When smoke alarms fail to operate, it is usually because batteries are missing, disconnected, or dead.

An ionization smoke alarm is generally more responsive to flaming fires and a photoelectric smoke alarm is generally more responsive to smoldering fires. For the best protection, or where extra time is needed, to awaken or assist others, both types of alarms, or combination ionization and photoelectric alarms are recommended.

JCHSEM encourages everyone to get involved in the various fire prevention activities throughout the month of October. Getting involved could be as easy as setting a reminder on your calendar to test your smoke alarms every month, setting up your emergency preparedness kit, or writing out and practicing a fire evacuation plan. Taking these small steps could prove invaluable in protecting your family and property.