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Spring into action – have you tested your smoke alarm?

As part of the March Fire Kills campaign, Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service (RBFRS) is asking people to test their smoke alarms regularly. If they’re not working properly, change the batteries or get a new smoke alarm. It’s a simple thing to do each week and can save lives.

Smoke alarms can give you the few extra seconds you need to escape in a fire. While the majority of homes across the country now have an alarm fitted, you should be aware that some alarms have a lifespan of just ten years, and some only a year,  before they need replacing. 

By testing your smoke alarm, you’ll be able to tell whether or not it’s working properly, which could provide you with that vital early warning in the event of a fire.

To keep your alarms in working order:

  • Make sure there is at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home;
  • Test your smoke alarms by pushing the button every week
  • Make sure you know the type of smoke alarm you have purchased and change the batteries when needed. This could be every ten years or even every year.
  • Fit smoke alarms in the right place – on landings and hallways and near bedrooms.
  • Consider fitting alarms in rooms which have electrical appliances – like heaters or chargers – or other fire risks
  • Take a moment to check on your loved ones who may need help to ensure they’re fully protected.

Group Manager Paul Jones said: “Smoke alarms can offer vital protection for you and your loved ones in the event of a fire, it’s easy to simply fit and forget – you might not know if it’s coming to the end of its lifespan or not working at all. If you test your alarm weekly you’ll find this out before it’s too late.

“If your smoke alarm isn’t working properly or you don’t have enough in your home, fit new ones, test them regularly and ensure that the batteries are changed when needed.”

Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service also offers free Safe and Well Visits to eligible residents. Safe and Well visits are tailored to individual needs, relating to health and wellbeing, as well as fire risk reduction.  To find out more, please visit

Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service is limiting non-essential contact with the public to help control the spread of Coronavirus and ensure our teams continue to be available to respond to emergencies.

We are also taking responsible steps to protect our communities and staff from unnecessary risk by suspending Safe and Well Visits, with the exception to individuals considered to be of the highest risk from fire.

 We will update you as the situation progresses at