12/4/18 - The Importance of a Working Smoke Alarm

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Updated: Dec. 4, 2018 at 3:55 PM CST
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If a fire breaks out in the middle of the night in your home, will you hear the sound of silence or a working smoke alarm?

Around 3 a.m. on December 4, people asleep in a Scott City, Missouri home heard their smoke alarm and everyone got out alive. According to Scott City Fire Chief Jay Cassout, a child heard the smoke alarm and woke up the adults in the home.

The fire destroyed around 80% of the home. A terrible loss for the family but because they cared enough to have working smoke alarms, and thanks to the heroic actions of that child, everyone got out alive.

We hear over-and-over about the need for working smoke alarms in our homes. According to FEMA, the risk of dying in a house fire is cut in half in homes with working smoke alarms.

Recently, Missouri State Fire Marshal Tim Bean recognized the American Red Cross with a Salute to Service award for the “Sound the Alarm. Save a Life” program that has installed almost 34,000 smoke alarms in Missouri homes.

10 days after the Red Cross installed smoke alarms in a Ferguson Missouri family home, a family was saved. The sound coming from one of the alarms woke the family when smoke was discovered coming from the basement.

That’s two stories, and dozens of people who owe their lives to their smoke alarms.

If you need a smoke alarm, you can reach out to the American Red Cross of Southeast Missouri at 573-335-9471. You’ll want to press the appropriate number for disaster services. You can also send an email to Lauren.thompson2@redcross.org for more information.

Making sure we have working, up-to-date smoke alarms protects our families and makes this a Better Heartland.

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