EPHRATA — With daylight saving time ending over the weekend, it’s almost that time of the year to look outside at 5 p.m. and see darkness. It is also that time of the year to change batteries in smoke alarms and the Ephrata Fire Department wants everyone to know just how important that is.
Daylight saving time ends at 2 a.m. Sunday morning and in preparation for that change the EFD is encouraging people to change the batteries in their smoke alarms and make sure they are in proper working order. According to EFD Chief Jeremy Burns, 3,000 people die in residential fires each year in the United States.
“Smoke alarms in the home are considered one of the best and least expensive means of providing an early warning of a potentially deadly fire,” Burns said. “Changing smoke alarms' batteries at least once a year, testing those alarms, and reminding others to do the same, are some of the simplest, most effective ways to reduce these tragic deaths and injuries.”
Burns offered the following facts for people to keep in mind:
• Smoke alarms should be replaced every 8-10 years, depending on what the manufacturer recommends.
• Most fire related deaths occur from smoke inhalation and toxic gases, not burns.
• Most fire related deaths happen at night when people are sleeping.
• House fires account for four of every five fire-related deaths and three out of every four fire-related injuries.
For questions about fire alarms or assistance contact your local fire department.
Richard Byrd can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.