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CR Fire Department: spring into action as clocks spring forward to replace fire alarm batteries

Fire Chief Doherty: Homes with no working smoke alarms still a common problem
The Campbell River Fire Department is reminding everyone to change the batteries in their smoke detectors when they change their clocks this weekend. Photo courtesy City of Campbell River

With clocks “springing forward” this weekend, it’s the perfect time to spring into action for fire safety and change your smoke alarm batteries.

The Campbell River Fire Department is issuing a reminder about having working smoke alarms in your home. It recommends replacing smoke alarm batteries each spring and fall, as the time changes, to help you remember.

“While you’re changing your clocks, please make a point of installing new batteries in your smoke alarms,” said fire chief Thomas Doherty, in a press release.

“Working smoke alarms greatly increase the chances of surviving a house fire. We repeat this message year after year but unfortunately homes with no smoke alarms, or no working smoke alarms, are still a common problem.”

Clocks will “spring forward’ one hour for the start of Daylight Saving Time on March 13.

Having a working alarm is essential because of the speed house fires, and the smoke they emit, spread.

“Studies show that you may have as little as one or two minutes to escape a fire, so early detection from a smoke alarm is critical,” said Doherty.

RELATED: One dead following overnight house fire in Port Alberni

Having a sufficient number of properly-located, working smoke alarms in accordance with the British Columbia Building Code will give you the most time to escape a house fire.

“We recommend having a smoke alarm in every bedroom, outside every sleeping area, and on each floor of your home,” he said. “Please make regular smoke alarm testing in your home a priority.”

To keep smoke alarms in working order, a “once-a-month, once-a-year, once-a-decade” rule is recommended, meaning: testing smoke alarms once a month, replacing alarm batteries once a year, and replacing the alarm altogether one every 10 years.

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