It’s not something to be messed with. Understanding what’s accessible to you in smoke alarm innovation should be among the top of your priority list to understand and accomplish without any delay.
Regardless of whether you have smoke alarms installed in your home, it is important to understand what they can do for you and your family in the event a fire does break out and what kind of protection they will offer. Will they simply make a sound ? or will they actually call out to a monitoring station as a precaution ? These are the questions you need answers to in order to understand what you currently have and what your options are.
The law states (in Ontario for example) that every home in Ontario must have a working smoke alarm on every storey and outside all sleeping areas.
Being prepared is your best defense against a fire in your home. Minimize your family’s risk of fire-related injury or death by following the current laws at a minimum. By simply just having smoke detectors that are installed by the builder (or store bought by yourself) in all the locations mentioned above may keep the fire marshall and some insurance companies at bay, but does it actually make you feel safe and offer you the protection you, your family and home really deserve ? It’s a fact that smoke alarms do save lives. So it’s important to minimize your family’s risk of fire-related injury or death by installing the right number of smoke alarms in the right places in your home, and by keeping them all in good working order. You should also test them regularly to make sure that they work properly.
Here are some important notes listed by the provincial government related to smoke alarms that are not being professionally monitored. This means they are either installed in your home by the builder or yourself from devices purchased from a local retailer.
- Install smoke alarms outside each bedroom and sleeping area, and on each level of your home, including the basement.
- Read and follow every step of the manufacturer’s directions when you install your smoke alarms.
- Test your smoke alarms every month to make sure that they are working properly.
- Follow the manufacturer’s directions for cleaning your smoke alarms.
- Change the batteries as often as recommended by the manufacturer.
- Replace any smoke alarm that is more than ten years old.
- Investigate any false alarms, and have an escape plan in case of a real fire.
Working smoke alarms will alert you to a fire in your home but to safely escape, everyone must know what to do when the alarm sounds. In a fire, every second counts. It is critical that you have a fire escape plan in place.
How many times have you witnessed a smoke detector going off in your home or at a relative’s place ? In my experience, I have witnessed many types of reactions and among the top of the list are
- Occupants attempted to turn the smoke alarm off before making sure it was not a real fire.
- Batteries being removed and then not replaced due to annoyance of burning toast and false alarms.
- People not wanting to leave the apartment building as they assume it is a drill or false alarm.
- Panic sets in and when it does they realize they have no idea on what to do.
- Low battery beeping alerts become annoying and people remove the batteries instead of replacing, rendering the device useless and dangerous.
The reason for this article is to hopefully create awareness to the importance of smoke alarms and what steps should be taken to ensure your safety.
Step 1. Comply with the law for your own safety.
The National Building Code of Canada is adopted, requiring smoke alarms in all new dwelling units, sleeping rooms, and on every floor. For more information and to be certain you are complying with the laws in your city, province or country make sure you seek out that information through your local fire department or government.
Step 2. Understand & Execute A Plan
Learn what type of smoke alarms you have and what is needed to ensure they are up to date and in perfect working condition. Create a maintenance plan as well as an emergency plan in the event of a real fire or emergency.
Step 3. Upgrade or at the very least learn your options
Be aware of your options and understand the best possible protection. Adding that extra layer of protection by having monitored smoke detectors for added safety. At the very least understand the difference and give yourself some peace of mind.
Allow me to offer the assistance of Alarm Guard Security, a trusted provider of TELUS. If you opt for an Alarm Guard system, our monitoring and support specialists are always ready to hear the alarm—even when you’re not home as well as contact emergency services when you can’t. This additional layer of security further protects your home and loved ones and offers you peace of mind no matter where you are.
Thank you for reading our current article on fire safety in your home. Our next article will cover smoke alarm device placement and preventative maintenance.
Remember to install smoke alarms – It’s The Law !!