At 2am on Sunday, March 11th we will be setting our clocks ahead one hour for Daylight-Savings Time. While you are taking a moment to change your clocks, also take a few moments to change the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Not only are you changing the batteries, you should be checking the detectors for cleanliness and to ensure they are less than 10 years old. If they are dusty, take a minute to wipe them off with a damp towel or use the attachment hose on your vacuum to clean off the dust. Units that are over 10 years old should be replaced with brand new units.
Many homes in Willingboro may not have any smoke detectors, not enough smoke detectors, detectors that are too old, or detectors that are not working. We want residents to understand that working smoke detectors are needed in every home, on every level (including the basement), outside each sleeping area and inside each bedroom. And, if a smoke detector is 10 years old or older, it needs to be replaced.
Smoke detectors can mean the difference between life and death in a fire. NFPA statistics show that working smoke detectors cut the chance of dying in a fire nearly in half, but they must be working properly to do so. The association's data shows that many homes have smoke detectors that aren't working or maintained properly, usually because of missing, disconnected or dead batteries. Roughly two-thirds of all home fire deaths result from fires in homes with no smoke detectors or no working smoke detectors.
One home structure fire is reported every 87 seconds and over 400 people die each year from carbon monoxide poisoning. The few extra minutes you take this weekend to make sure your detector's batteries are new, and that the units are clean and up to date could help save you or your family in the event of an emergency.
For more information on changing your smoke and carbon monoxide detector batteries you can visit the website of the National Fire Protection Association and for more information on the dangers of carbon monoxide you can visit the Kidde Fire Safety website (click on the link at the bottom of this article).
The Willingboro Fire Department provides free smoke detectors, and a limited suppy of 9-volt batteries, to the residents of Willingboro. We have a number of smoke detectors that we will install in your home for you (one per household). If you choose to purchase your own smoke detector we can assist you with installation. There are several ways that you can receive a free smoke detector:
1. Stop by or call the temporary Fire Headquarters at 40 Middlebury Lane, (609) 871-7476. You can schedule an appointment for us to install one for you.
2. Stop by our display at any township event to schedule an appointment for us to install one for you.
3. Click on the request link at the bottom of the "Smoke Detector" page in the "Public" section of our website. Complete the form and someone will contact to schedule an appointment for us to install one for you.