November 02, 2011

State fire marshal advises Missourians to use extra hour this weekend to change smoke alarm batteries

State Fire Marshal Randy Cole is advising Missourians to change the batteries in their smoke and carbon monoxide alarms this weekend as they set their clocks back to Standard Time. 
"Studies show that more than 60 percent of deadly U.S. fires happen in homes that do not have smoke alarms installed or working properly," said Marshal Cole. "Taking the time to change the batteries in your smoke alarm is the simplest way to protect your family from the threat of a deadly fire." 
Daylight Saving Time will end at 2 a.m. on Sunday, Nov. 6, pushing clocks back one hour. Cole encourages everyone to use the extra hour to test their alarms to make sure they are in working order, practice family escape routes and to remind family, friends and neighbors to do so, too.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, 40 percent of U.S. residential fire deaths result from fires in homes with no smoke alarms, while 23 percent occur in homes without working smoke alarms. Additionally, the National Safety Council reports that across the U.S., nearly 300 people die each year as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless poison that can be detected by a carbon monoxide alarm. 
National statistics show:
§ On average, home fires kill 540 children ages 14 and under each year.
§ Eighty percent of the children who die in home fires are killed in homes without working smoke alarms.
§ From 11 p.m. – 7 a.m.— when people tend to be asleep and the home is dark— is the peak time period for home fire deaths.
§ Only 23 percent of U.S. families have developed and practiced a home fire escape plan.
Cole recommends that Missourians regularly check smoke detectors by pushing the test button, plan two escape routes from their homes and practice those escape routes with the entire family.   


For more information, call 573-751-5432 or e-mail