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Take time to Test Smoke Detectors in March

Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service is asking people across to test their smoke alarms regularly and make testing them part of their regular household routine.

This month, RBFRS is encouraging everyone to make fire safety a priority by ensuring they have enough smoke alarms in the home and that they work. It only takes a few seconds to test an alarm and help save lives.

Smoke alarms give occupants the few extra seconds they need to escape in a fire. RBFRS recommends weekly testing to ensure you smoke detectors are still in working order. To test a smoke detector, simply press the button and listen for the beep. Always remember to #presstotest.

While the majority of homes across the country now have an alarm fitted, most people are not aware that the average alarm has a lifespan of just ten years and then needs replacing.

Therefore, RBFRS is asking people to make sure that their alarms are up to date and up to the job.

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. This should be done weekly
  • Check that your smoke alarms are less than 10 years old
  • Change the batteries every year. Never remove them.
  • Fit smoke alarms in the right place – on landings and hallways and near bedrooms.  Also consider fitting them in rooms which have electrical appliances – e.g. a heater or charger – or other fire risks
  • Take a moment to check on your loved ones who may need help to ensure they’re fully protected.

Gail Muirhead, Prevention Manager, said:

Smoke alarms can offer vital protection for you and your loved ones, but most people simply fit and forget – they don’t know if it might be coming to the end of its lifespan or not working at all.

“For most of us, there is nothing more important than keeping our loved ones safe and secure. So, if your alarm is getting past its best or your top floor is missing an alarm of its own, fit new ones, test them at least once a month and protect your loved ones.”

You can read more about smoke detector safety on our website.