|SARASOTA COUNTY – Sarasota County Emergency Services officials are reminding the community to take an important step to protect their homes and loved ones by changing out batteries in smoke alarms and weather radios with the start of daylight saving on Sunday, March 12. |
Smoke alarms and weather radios can save lives by providing an early warning in the event of an emergency. The time change is a good reminder to replace batteries in these devices.
Smoke alarms that are properly installed and maintained can give residents a chance to escape. Almost three out of five home fire deaths were caused by fires in properties with no smoke alarms or smoke alarms that failed to operate, according to key findings of a 2021 National Fire Prevention Association report.
Weather radios will activate for severe weather watches and warnings, giving residents extra time to react before dangerous weather hits.
According to Sarasota County Emergency Services Director Rich Collins, these safety tips could also help save lives:
Make it a habit to replace the batteries in smoke alarms when adjusting clocks for the time change. Test smoke alarms monthly to be sure they work properly. A “chirping” sound from a smoke alarm means the battery needs to be changed immediately.When replacing a battery, follow the smoke alarm manufacturer instructions or list of batteries on the back of the alarm. Smoke alarms are good for 10 years before they should be replaced. Writing the purchase date with a marker on the back of the smoke alarm helps remind you when it has reached its 10-year lifespan.Ensure smoke alarms are on every level of the home as well as inside and outside any sleeping areas. Use weather radios that have Specific Area Message Encoding. Other than a weekly test, the radio will only alert when there are concerns for the programmed counties. For additional information regarding weather radios, call 311 or visit scgov.net. If you cannot afford a smoke alarm or for information on smoke alarms, contact Sarasota County Fire Prevention Office at 941-861-2290.
Sarasota County prohibits discrimination in all services, programs or activities. View the complete policy at scgov.net (keywords: ADA compliance).