Beep where you sleep

Every bedroom needs a working smoke alarm. If you didn’t know that, you’re not alone. An online questionnaire distributed by the National Fire Protection Association showed that less than half (42 percent) of about 36,000 respondents did not know that a smoke alarm should be installed in each bedroom of the home.

In an effort to better educate the public about this “sleepy” smoke alarm requirement, NFPA—the official sponsor of Fire Prevention Week for more than 90 years—identified the theme for this month’s Fire Prevention Week as, “Every Second Counts: Plan 2 Ways Out!”

According to NFPA statistics, half of all U.S. home fire deaths occur at night between the hours of 11 p.m. and 7 a.m., when people are most likely to be sleeping. Having a working smoke alarm in the home cuts the risk of dying in a fire in half.

Fire Prevention Week is Oct. 8-14, but these facts underscore the extreme importance of having working smoke alarms in all bedrooms. If you’re like our household, the week passed with little notification, much less fanfare.

It’s not too late to make sure every family member in your home can hear the beep where they sleep. We know all too well the tendency be “cheap where they sleep” and hang on to the money required to provide even minimum coverage in the house, much less each bedroom. The odds are in your favor that you will never need those extra smoke alarms, but the cost of being cheap can be incredibly, horribly costly. Don’t be too cheap to provide your loved ones with the beep they may need where they sleep.

—DR