For the second year in a row, the Northeast Ohio Region has reached the goal set for the number of smoke alarm installations in homes throughout our communities.
And there are still nearly four months to go before the close of the fiscal year, June 30th.
The goal was 10,000 smoke alarms. As of Monday, March 6, Red Cross workers, volunteers and community partners had installed more than 10,100. “While we continue to seek our own internal goal of exceeding our installation totals from last year (approximately 13,000) we still must take a moment to recognize all of the hard work that has gone into achieving the national target at this point in FY 2017,” Regional Disaster Officer Tim O’Toole wrote in a message to the Northeast Ohio staff. “As one of the smallest regions in the nation we still are among the leaders in this effort.
The annoncement couldn’t come at a better time: this weekend, we are urged to TEST our smoke alarms as we TURN our clocks ahead for Daylight Saving Time. It’s also a good time to take these steps to make sure our households are prepared for emergencies:
- Install smoke alarms. If someone doesn’t have smoke alarms, they should install them. At a minimum, put one on every level of the home, inside bedrooms and outside sleeping areas. Check local building codes for additional requirements.
- Practice an escape plan. Make sure everyone in the household knows how to get out of every room and how to get out of the home in less than two minutes.
- Get a kit. Keep disaster supplies in an easy-to-carry bag to use at home or if ordered to evacuate.
- Make a plan. Have all household members plan what steps they should take if an emergency occurs.
- Be informed. Learn what emergencies can occur in the area and how officials notify residents should a disaster occur.
The installation of smoke alarms is just one part of the Operation Save-A-Life campaign. Providing free home fire safety inspections and disseminating valuable fire safety information are also critical components. And volunteers perform the majority of the work involved in making our communities safer.
You can volunteer to help the red Cross make our communities safer at redcross.org/neo, where you can also apply for a home fire safety inspection and free smoke alarm installation.
The fiscal year ends on June 30th. We’ll let you know how many MORE smoke alarms our volunteers, staff and partners are able to install by then.