by NFPA's Lisa Braxton
Conversations I’ve had with my sister recently about smoke alarm safety have paid off. For months, Sylvia has been concerned about the smoke alarms in her house. One alarm didn’t seem to be working and had her worried. She sent a request to the non-emergency page of the Montgomery County government website in Maryland where she lives, to have the fire department come to the house to inspect the alarms.
Within a few days a fire truck rolled up to the curb. Firefighters confirmed her suspicions about the non-functioning alarm. And they had more news: The alarms in the house were 15 years old. On one alarm, firefighters couldn’t even find the date. They installed new smoke alarms with non-replaceable (long-life) batteries designed to remain effective for up to 10 years.
After the installation was completed, Sylvia sent me an email. “Thanks sis,” she said. “I feel safer now.” I sent one back. “Glad you took care of that. Now we can both sleep easier.”