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Red Cross reminds community to turn back clocks and test smoke alarms this weekend

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SANTA BARBARA COUNTY, Calif. – With daylight saving time ending on Sunday, Nov. 6, the American Red Cross said to remember to test your smoke alarms as you turn back your clocks so as to help stay safe from home fires.

“Home fires claim more lives in a typical year than all natural disasters combined, but working smoke alarms can cut the risk of dying in a home fire by half,” said Ethan Walker, Regional Prevention and Preparedness Manager.

Local Red Cross volunteers responded to help 304 people in Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties affected by 50 home fires in recent years, according to the organization.

“The sooner an alarm alerts you to a fire, the sooner you can get out," said Walker. "When you turn your clocks back this weekend, also test your smoke alarms to help prevent a tragedy in your home.”

Seven people lose their lives to home fires every day in the U.S., according to Red Cross.

Red Cross provided the following steps on how to "turn and test":

  • Install smoke alarms on every level of your home, including inside and outside bedrooms and sleeping areas.
  • Replace smoke alarms that are 10 years or older. Components such as sensors can become less sensitive over time. Follow your alarm’s manufacturer instructions.
  • Practice your two-minute home fire escape plan. Make sure everyone in your household can get out in less than two minutes — the amount of time you may have to escape a burning home before it’s too late.
  • Include at least two ways to get out of every room and select a meeting spot at a safe distance away from your home, such as your neighbor’s home or landmark like a specific tree in your front yard, where everyone can meet.

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Article Topic Follows: Safety
daylight savings
Santa Barbara
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Lily Dallow

Lily Dallow is a digital journalist and assignment editor at News Channel 3-12. To learn more about Lily, click here.


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