Daylight-savings time is ending Sunday, Nov. 4, which means it's time to get an extra hour of sleep.
This year's time change is also the 25th anniversary of the "Change Your Clock, Change Your Battery®" program. The event, sponsored by Energizer and the International Association of Fire Chiefs, prompts residents to change the batteries in their smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors at the same time they are changing their clocks.
Grand Island Fire Chief Cory Schmidt is encouraging everyone to use their extra hour to change the batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and test to make sure the devices are in operational order. The Grand Island Fire Department reminds citizens this one easy step can save the lives of family, friends, and neighbors.
Schmidt said, "The Grand Island Fire Department can't stress enough the importance of ensuring smoke detectors are in working order. This begins by testing smoke detectors at least once a month and changing batteries once a year. A great way to remember to change the batteries is to do so at the same time you set your clocks back."
The U.S. Fire Administration reports that approximately 3,500 people die each year as a result of home fires, with most of these deaths occurring in homes without smoke detectors. According to reports by the Fire Analysis and Research Division of the National Fire Protection Association those most at risk include:
The Grand Island Fire Department recommends putting smoke detectors in each bedroom, in the hallway outside bedrooms, and on every floor. Additionally, the International Association of Fire Chiefs recommends smoke detectors in homes be replaced every 10 years; furthermore, having both ionization and photo electric smoke alarms are the best way to alert people to all types of home fires.
The Grand Island Fire Department has taken grant money in the amount of around $91,000 and helped to provide smoke detectors to residents who live in mobile homes and who are 65 and older. So far 3,800 smoke detectors have been installed in 350 mobile homes and 400 homes with residents who are 65 years and older.
The Grand Island Fire Department will take calls to help anyone that has questions about testing, replacing batteries, or other concerns relating to smoke detectors. To reach the fire department, call 308.385.5444 ext. 220.
For more information about the "Change Your Clock Change Your Battery" program, call 314-727-5700 ext. 108.
In addition to testing smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, Schmidt also encourages citizens to take time this weekend to plan and practice home fire escape routes and prepare a fire safety kit which includes flashlights and fresh batteries.