Fire prevention officials dispense key advice during Fire Prevention Week

Published 3:31 pm Thursday, October 7, 2021

The National Fire Prevention Association recognizes Fire Prevention Week 2021 from Oct. 3 to Oct. 9. and as the week comes to a close fire safety experts dispense life-long advice that can save the public a lifetime’s worth of trouble.

This year, the theme is “Learn the Sounds of Fire Safety” and focuses on educating children and adults about smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms and the life-saving sounds they make.

“Always pay attention to your smoke detectors in your home,” said Oxford Fire Chief Joey Gardner.

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For instance, a single chirp from your Carbon Monoxide (CO) alarm every 30 or 60 seconds means the battery is low and must be replaced. If your smoke alarm issues a continued set of three loud beeps it means smoke or fire.

“If you hear that smoke detector and don’t know what the cause of it is, then get outside and notify the fire department,” said Gardner.

Gardner also advises the public to change their batteries regularly if their home has an older fire alarm model.

Smoke alarms should be tested once a month, batteries should be replaced once a year, and the entire alarm should be replaced every 10 years.

Although zero fire deaths have occurred in Lafayette County, there have been 58 fire deaths in Mississippi at last check in 2021. There were no working smoke alarms in 34 of those cases.

“A working smoke alarm cuts your risk of dying in a fire in half,” said State Fire Marshal Mike Chaney. “Not having one, or many placed throughout the home, is simply unacceptable.”

If you need a smoke alarm, ask your local fire department. Additionally, the State Fire Marshal Office recommends that every family make an escape plan that includes two ways out and practice it often. Make sure that children and those who may need extra assistance have someone to help them escape and set a location away from the home for everyone to meet in case of a fire.