Change your clocks. Replace your smoke alarm batteries. Both are important this weekend as Daylight Saving Time ends on Sunday, November 2.
While changing your clock can keep you on time for work on Monday, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) advises consumers that putting fresh batteries in your smoke alarms can save your life.
In recent years, an estimated annual average of 378,700 fires, 2,740 deaths, 13,090 injuries and $5.6 billion in property losses associated with residential fires have been reported by fire departments.
“Smoke alarms save lives. That’s a fact,” said CPSC Acting Chairman Nancy Nord. “Working smoke alarms buy you valuable time to get out of your home when there’s a fire.”
CPSC urges consumers to install smoke alarms on every level of their home, outside sleeping areas, and inside each bedroom. To minimize nuisance alarms, install smoke alarms at least 10 feet from the stove and oven.
CPSC staff recommends installing both ionization and photoelectric type smoke alarms. Ionization type smoke alarms typically detect flaming fires more quickly, while photoelectric type smoke alarms typically detect smoldering fires sooner.
In addition to replacing smoke alarm batteries, consumers should test their smoke alarms every month to make sure they are operating properly – and never disable a smoke alarm. Long life smoke alarms with 10-year batteries are also available to consumers.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of injury or death associated with the use of the thousands of consumer products under the agency's jurisdiction. Deaths, injuries and property damage from consumer product incidents cost the nation more than $900 billion annually. CPSC is committed to protecting consumers and families from products that pose a fire, electrical, chemical or mechanical hazard. CPSC's work to ensure the safety of consumer products - such as toys, cribs, power tools, cigarette lighters and household chemicals - contributed to a decline in the rate of deaths and injuries associated with consumer products over the past 30 years.
Federal law bars any person from selling products subject to a publicly-announced voluntary recall by a manufacturer or a mandatory recall ordered by the Commission.
To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury go online to www.SaferProducts.gov or call CPSC's Hotline at (800) 638-2772 or teletypewriter at (301) 595-7054 for the hearing impaired. Consumers can obtain news release and recall information at www.cpsc.gov, on Twitter @OnSafety or by subscribing to CPSC's free e-mail newsletters.