Essex County Fire and Rescue Service

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Smoke alarms save lives

Two recent polls carried out by Essex County Fire and Rescue have revealed that although people are overwhelmingly in favour of making sure that every home has a working smoke alarm, they are less careful at making sure that their homes are properly protected.

While 91% of people said that they believed that every home should have a smoke alarm by law, just 16% of people test their smoke alarms weekly and nearly half never test their smoke alarms at all.

Divisional Officer Neil Fenwick said: “It is heartening to see that people recognise how important smoke alarms are.

“What is less encouraging is that despite this recognition, 43% of people never test their smoke alarms and less than one in six tests their alarms weekly.

“Smoke alarms are the most important piece of equipment in any home. They provide vital early warning at the first sign of fire giving everyone in the house time to get safely out and have proven time and again that they can save lives.

“There is no excuse for not having a smoke alarm in your home. Essex County Fire and Rescue Service provides a free home fire safety visit service in which we will come to anyone’s home, carry out a fire safety check and fit smoke alarms - all at no cost.”

To arrange a free home fire safety, call 0300 303 0088 or email webmaster@essex-fire.gov.uk

DO Fenwick said: “The home fire safety visit does not have to be for you. If you are concerned that a relative or neighbour could benefit from a visit, then do not hesitate to get in touch with us.”

A survey in which visitors to the Essex Countey Fire and Rescue Service website were asked: “How often do you test your smoke alarm?” found that 16% of people tested their alarm once a week, 34% once a month, 7% when the clocks change and 43% never test their smoke alams.

A second survey asked: “Should smoke alarms be law?” 91% of people answered yes while just 11% said no.

To arrange a free home fire safety, call 0845 601 2495 or email webmaster@essex-fire.gov.uk

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