By Marisa Thomas
Fire experts say that when a house-fire breaks out, you and your family only have two minutes to safely escape. Smoke detectors can give you precious time.
“There are fires every day, and a number of people don’t have smoke alarms installed. And what we have found is that people that do have smoke alarms basically die at only half the rate . . .So, having them installed greatly increases their chance of surviving a fire.” Michael Hannan, a community volunteer lead with the American Red Cross, said.
That’s why the Red Cross has the ‘Sound the Alarm’ program. The organization installs smoke alarms at no cost to residents, and gives information on fire preparation.
“In addition to that, we also provide information on common hazards that may lead to fire so they can help prevent that and work with them to develop an escape plan from each of the rooms in their home. So, should a fire occur, they’re prepared to get out as quickly as possible,” Hannan said.
Volunteers went door-to-door, seeing if residents needed new smoke alarms or wanted theirs checked. Almost a decade from when the program began, the mission of fire-prevention continues.
“This program was started in 2014 by the Red Cross with the goal of installing smoke alarms in 1 million households nationwide and that being two and a half million total smoke alarms. The Red Cross actually met that goal this year, but we’re continuing to offer this program because it is so important to make sure that people are as safe as possible,” Hannan said.
The Red Cross does the program throughout the year, so if you’d like to have your smoke alarms checked or installed by the Red Cross, you visit their website: soundthealram.org.