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For Immediate Release
November 1, 2013

Media Contact:
Uli Peretz
Deputy Fire Marshal
Redwood City Fire Department
650.780.7400

Fire Department Encouraging Residents to "Change Your Clock, Change Your Batteries" at Time Change Sunday, November 3rd to Increase Community Fire Safety

Change Your Clock, Change Your Batteries" Campaign, in its 26th Year, Aimed at Raising Awareness that 80 Percent of Fire Deaths Occur in Homes Without Working Smoke Alarms.

Redwood City, Calif. - The Redwood City Fire Department is participating in the 26th year of the "Change Your Clock, Change Your Batteries" campaign sponsored by the International Association of Fire Chiefs. This campaign reminds residents to change the batteries in their smoke detector or alarm, and their carbon monoxide detector when they "fall back" for daylight savings time on Sunday, Nov. 3, 2013.

Communities nationwide witness tragic home fire deaths each year. Communities that adopt this program and talk about it with family, friends and neighbors can help reduce the number of home fire fatalities. Non-working smoke alarms rob residents of the protective benefits home fire safety devices are designed to provide. The most commonly cited cause of non-working smoke alarms is worn or missing batteries.

"Approximately 80 percent of fire deaths occur in homes without working smoke alarms," reports Redwood City Fire Chief James Skinner. "It's a tragic statistic that could be reduced by adopting the simple habit of the 'Change Your Clock, Change Your Battery' program," Skinner states. "Changing smoke alarm 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."

The message of the campaign focuses on residents getting into the habit of changing batteries in their smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors, testing the alarms, planning and practicing escape routes and reminding friends, family, neighbors and fellow community members to do the same. The campaign's message is simple and can be lifesaving.
To complement this campaign, the Redwood City Fire Department in partnership with Rebuilding Together Peninsula is providing free smoke alarms and free installation through its Smoke Alarm Program for all residents living in single family dwellings or duplexes. For more information on how to apply for this free service, contact Rebuilding Together Peninsula at 650.366.6597 or online
The Fire Chief also recommends that smoke alarms in homes be replaced every 10 years and to have both ionization and photo-electric smoke alarms to alert residents to all types of home fires. 

"The peak time for home fire fatalities is between 11pm and 7am when most families are sleeping, Skinner said. "Smoke alarm maintenance is a simple, effective way to reduce home fire deaths. Children and senior citizens are most at risk, and a working smoke alarm can give them the extra seconds they need to get out safely."

For more information about this campaign and how to make your community more fire safe, call Uli Peretz, Deputy Fire Marshal with the Redwood City Fire Department at 650.780.7400.

Visit the Redwood City Fire Department's website at www.redwoodcity.org/fire for fire prevention, disaster preparedness, and other important information. Visit Redwood City's award-winning website at www.redwoodcity.org for information about the City and its services, the community, recreation programs, education, and local business. Subscribe to Redwood City's email newsletter and other City documents by visiting www.redwoodcity.org/newsletters.

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