A few days ago while cooking dinner, I set off our smoke alarm.. no jokes about my exceptional cooking skills either please. But seriously, as I am sure you know it is not one of the most ear pleasing sounds. I did the standard: turned on the fans, opened the doors, and wildly waved a towel in front of it and my two year old helped too!
When the noise and chaos finally subsided, I realized that in the few years we have lived in our house, I never really know if the smoke alarm is going to work. This is the single device most likely to save my family's lives in the event of a fire, and I didn't know if it worked. I was appalled with myself.
You may or may not be in the same boat as me, but it's worth checking out your smoke detectors when you read this statistic: you and your family are twice as likely to die in a serious house fire if you don't have smoke alarms!
A few more suggestions while we are on the subject of smoke detectors:
- If you don't have them, get and install them now! If you do have them make sure they work! (They have a test button)
- Buy smoke alarms that have the seal of approval from and independent testing firm such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL) or Factory Manual (FM).
- Your house should have at least one smoke alarm on each level and one outside each bedroom.
- You should test your smoke alarms once a month, and you should replace the batteries at least once a year. Many people change their batteries in the Spring when they change the clocks (which is this Sunday, March 9).
- Make certain everyone in your family can recognize the sound of the smoke alarm, and know what that sound means.
- You should plan escape routes from every room in the house, and you should figure out at least two ways to get out of each room.
- Rehearse escape routes from his/her bedrooms and from all other commonly used rooms in the house.
So please, check the batteries in your smoke alarms. If you don't have them, please get smoke alarms, and please, make it a regular habit to make sure they are operating properly.
All of us at Tanner Insurance Agency, Inc. want you and your family to be safe and sound all year!