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Fire is everyone’s fight: smoke alarms

Smoke alarms save lives! 65 percent of home fire deaths happen in homes with no smoke alarms at all or no smoke alarms that work. When there is a fire, smoke spreads fast and you need smoke alarms to give you time to get out. • Test alarms at least monthly by pushing the test button. • Smoke rises; install smoke alarms following manufacturer’s instructions high on a wall or on a ceiling. Save manufacturer’s instructions for testing and maintenance. • Replace batteries in all smoke alarms at least once a year. If an alarm “chirps,” warning the battery is low, replace the battery right away. • Replace all smoke alarms, including alarms that use ten year batteries and hard-wired alarms, when they are ten years old or sooner if they do not respond properly when tested. • Be sure the smoke alarm has the label of a recognized testing laboratory. • Alarms that are hard-wired (and include battery backup) must be installed by a qualified electrician. • If cooking fumes or steam sets off nuisance alarms, replace the alarm with an alarm that has a “hush” button. A “hush” button will reduce the alarm’s sensitivity for a short period of time. • An ionization alarm with a hush button or photoelectric alarm should be used if the alarm is within 20 feet of a cooking appliance. • Smoke alarms that include a recordable voice announcement, in addition to the usual alarm sound, may be helpful in waking children through the use of a familiar voice. • Smoke alarms are available for people who are deaf or hard of hearing. These alarms use strobe lights. Vibration equipment can be added to these alarms. • Smoke alarms are an important part of a home fire escape plan. If you are over 55 or have an elderly person in your home and you do not have any working smoke alarms; please contact the Madison Senior Citizens Center (973-4241) or Madison Fire Rescue (973-5075) and let them know that you need smoke alarms. ANY QUESTIONS ABOUT FIRE SAFETY? Please feel free to call (850) 973-5075 with any questions you may have about smoke alarms or any other fire safety topic. Any group(s) that would like to have someone come out and speak about smoke alarms or any other fire safety topics, please contact Chief Bruce Jordan (850 ) 253-5117 or email:

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