Test your smoke alarms to keep you and your family safe

Avon Fire & Rescue Service (AF&RS), as part of the Fire Kills campaign, is asking people to test their smoke alarms regularly and making testing them part of their regular household routine.

This month we’re encouraging everyone to make fire safety a priority by ensuring they have enough smoke alarms in the home and that they work. It only takes a few seconds and saves lives.

Smoke alarms can give someone the few extra seconds they need to escape in a fire. While the majority of the homes across the country now have an alarm fitted, most people are not aware that the average alarm has a lifespan of just ten years and then needs replacing.

Ben Thompson, Group Manager for Protection and Prevention, said: “Smoke alarms can offer vital protection for you and your loved ones, but most people simply fit and forget – they don’t know if it might be coming to the end of its lifespan or not working at all.

“For most of us, there is nothing more important than keeping our loved ones safe and secure. So, if your alarm is getting past its best or you’re missing an alarm, fit new ones and test them at least once a month.”

Here are AF&RS’s smoke alarm top tips:

  • Install at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home.
  • Consider fitting additional alarms in other rooms, particularly those with electrical appliances (e.g., heaters) and near sleeping areas.
  • Test your smoke alarm by pushing the button at least once month.
  • Change the batteries in your smoke alarm every year.
  • Replace your smoke alarms every ten years.

Ben added: “We also urge you to check in on your loved ones, especially those less able, to make sure they have enough smoke alarms and that they are in the right places too.”

For advice specific to you and your home, please complete a home fire safety check. Further information can be found at  fireengland.uk/fire-safety or www.avonfire.gov.uk