Consumers will turn their clocks back one hour when Daylight Saving Time ends on Sunday, November 3, 2019, at 2:00 a.m. As you set the new time, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) reminds you that now is the perfect time to check and change the batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide (CO) alarms.
“Early warning is crucial to getting out of a house fire alive and for surviving CO poisoning,” said CPSC Acting Chairman Robert Adler. “I encourage everyone to check and change the batteries in their smoke and carbon monoxide alarms. Doing this can save you and your family in a fire or CO emergency.”
Why is this important?
CPSC estimates that in 2016, there were nearly 352,000 residential structure fires, resulting in about 2,410 deaths, 10,370 injuries, and $6.36 billion in property damage.
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA,) in 2018, a home fire occurs at the rate of one every 87 seconds. From 2012-2016, the NFPA estimated that almost three of every five home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes with no working smoke alarms.
In addition, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate more than 400 people die in the United States every year from CO poisoning.
What should you do to protect your family?
Check …change …practice. It’s that simple. Check your alarms monthly. Change the batteries yearly. Practice a fire escape plan.
A smoke alarm should be on every level of your home, inside each bedroom, and outside sleeping areas. CO alarms should also be placed on every level of your home, and outside sleeping areas. Batteries should be replaced in alarms, unless the alarms have sealed 10-year batteries. Replace your smoke alarms if they are more than 10 years old.
When you “change the time,” take the time to ensure your alarms for smoke and carbon monoxide are working.