Every home should be equipped with smoke alarms. Proper installment and maintenance plays a vital role in reducing the potential for loss of life and property with them in your home or business. The following statement isnít a ìscare tactic,î but with smoke alarms in the home or business, your chances of dying from reported fire-related circumstances are cut in half.

• 96 percent of all homes have at least one smoke alarm - according to a 2010 telephone survey.

• Approximately 66 percent of home fire deaths in 2005-2009 resulted from home fires in homes with no smoke alarms or no working alarms.

• When smoke alarms fail to work the reasons are batteries are missing or they are dead. Almost 25 percent of smoke alarm failures were due to dead batteries.

• A properly installed and maintained smoke alarm is the only thing in your home that can alert you and your family to a fire 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Whether you are awake or asleep, a working smoke alarm is constantly on alert, scanning the air for fire and smoke.

TYPES OF SMOKE ALARMS

There are many brands of smoke alarms available on the market today. However, there are only two basic types: Ionization and Photoelectric. It canít be stated that one is any better than the other in every fire situation in a home. Both Ionization and Photoelectric are better at detecting distinctly different, yet potentially fatal fires. Also, you canít predict which type of fire might occur in your home. The United States Fire Administration (USFA) recommends that every residence and place where people sleep be equipped with:

• Both Ionization and Photoelectric smoke alarms, or

• Dual sensor smoke alarms, which contain both Ionization and Photoelectric sensors.

SMOKE ALARM POWER

Smoke alarms are powered by:

• Battery - A disposable 9-volt or a non-replaceable 10-year lithium (long-life) battery are used in some models.

• Electric - Smoke alarms can be hard-wired into your home electric service. A back-up battery is usually present on hard-wired systems and will need to be replaced.

• Ionization and Photoelectric alarms cost usually between $6 and $20. Dual sensor smoke alarms cost between $24 and $40. Either system is worth the investment when you consider the savings and family safety that they create.

• Some fire departments offer them at reduced prices or some even furnish them free of any charge. Contact your local fire department to inquire if they offer either of these considerations.

UPCOMING EVENTS

• Nov. 21 - Fall Fun Day Evaluation Meeting, 10 a.m., Neshoba Coliseum.

• Nov. 28-29 - Neshoba County 4-H Office Closed for Thanksgiving Holidays.

Until next week, get into 4-H!