Last month during the Fall 2018 Smoke Alarm Blitz, South Fulton Fire Rescue visited 55 homes in the Cliftondale community to test alarms and install new ones. It was the first time the blitz had been carried out in the community in 10 years.
The homes visited were selected based on their age and geographical location. Out-of-date and dead alarms were replaced with new models powered by lithium-ion batteries with a 10-year life span. The alarms were donated by Operation Save a Life, a collaborative fire safety awareness effort by multiple partners including WSB-TV, Home Depot and Kiddie.
Residents also received information on exit drills in the home (E.D.I.T.H.) and holiday and cooking safety.
“The residents of the neighborhood were very grateful that we came out to test their alarms and replace the ones that were not operational,” said Rachel Benoit, South Fulton Fire Rescue’s new fire education specialist. “The residents can now have the peace of mind that their families will be alerted in case of a fire at their home, giving them a bit of security just in time for the holidays.”
Nine members of the Fire Rescue department directly assisted with the blitz effort: Captain Luster, Firefighter McClarity, Firefighter Henderson, Firefighter Hay, Lieutenant Hart, Firefighter Langston, Firefighter Williams, Battalion Chief Marcus and Lieutenant Salamanca. Plans for a Spring 2019 blitz are already underway.
Warning from a working smoke alarm is critical to ensure that families can get outside quickly and safely. Smoke alarms are considered to be one of the most important components of a home fire escape plan.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, in 2017 three out of every five home fire deaths resulted in homes with no smoke alarm or no working smoke alarm. In homes where smoke alarms were present but did not operate, nearly half had missing or disconnected batteries.
South Fulton Fire Rescue encourages all South Fulton households to test smoke alarms monthly and replace them after 10 years. If the expiration date or manufacture date on a smoke alarm is no longer visible, residents are encouraged to replace those as well.
South Fulton residents that have questions about fire safety or the smoke alarms in their homes can contact Rachel Benoit at (470) 809-7548.