By Jessica Gorman SYRACUSE, NY (NCC NEWS) — In light of the recent fire that killed 4 people in a home on Fitch Street, the American Red Cross is partnering with the Syracuse City Fire Department to install over 500 smoke detectors in high-risk homes. Thursday, April 12th, fire teams will install 550 brand new 10 year lithium-battery powered smoke detectors participating in the national Sound The Alarm fire safety campaign.
Syracuse is just one of 100 communities taking part in this years event, and Fire Chief Michael Mond says that it is extremely important for this community, which has seen an increase in home fire deaths. In 2016, the amount of fire related deaths was 6 times the national average.
According to a recent national study, impoverished neighborhoods see more than double the national average of fire and fire related deaths than middle-income families. Chief Mond says that the main contributing factor to this problem, is the lack of functional smoke alarms in the home.
Mond says that installing these new 10-year high powered alarms will even help fire fighters. “One of the things we stress is check your batteries [in the smoke detectors] every month… But having these lithium battery smoke detectors is a real improvement in fire safety.”
Not only will participants receive these new smoke detectors but they will also be educated on fire safety and create a home fire safety plan. In the plan, volunteers will help residents create escape routes and a meeting place outside of the home. CEO of the Central New York Chapter of the American Red Cross, Rosie Taravella says that not many people know that a fire can engulf a home in less than two minutes, and having a plan put in place can really reduce the rate of home fire deaths significantly.
If you are interested in participating to receive a new smoke detector and fire safety training you can visit https://www.redcross.org/sound-the-alarm or contact the Red Cross on West Genesee Street.