When you change the clock, change the battery

Published 11:02 pm Tuesday, March 9, 2010

This Sunday, people across America will be setting their clocks forward to begin Daylight Saving Time. During the time that people are changing their clocks, fire department officials remind people to change the batteries in their smoke and carbon monoxide (CO) detectors.

Demopolis Fire and Rescue Department chief Ronnie Few said that smoke detectors and CO detectors save lives and listed some safety tips for people to follow:

Have at least one working smoke alarm on each level of the home.

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Test the smoke alarms and CO detectors monthly to make sure they are working.

Vacuum around the smoke detectors to be sure they are free of dust.

Do not ignore the chirping sound the smoke alarm makes when maintenance is required.

Plan, discuss and practice an escape route with the family for dangerous situations such as home fires, CO leaks and natural disasters.

Carbon monoxide detectors are new to a lot of people, and can also save lives. It is colorless, odorless and tasteless, but about 500 people in the U.S. die each year from CO poisoning. A CO detector should be placed in a central location outside of each sleeping area.

Few also encourages people to use flashlights when the power goes out instead of candles, as candles are the third-leading cause of injuries from home fires.