Pennsylvania State Fire Commissioner: Remember to Change Batteries in Smoke, Carbon Monoxide Alarms When Changing Clocks this Weekend

Mar 11, 2010, 12:27 ET from Pennsylvania Office of the State Fire Commissioner

HARRISBURG, Pa., March 11 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- State Fire Commissioner Ed Mann is reminding Pennsylvanians to change the batteries in their smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors when they move their clocks ahead by one hour this weekend.

"Buying, installing and maintaining smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors is one of the best and cheapest ways people can save lives," Mann said. "These alarms have literally saved thousands of lives and it's a good idea to get into the habit of changing batteries in these devices whenever you change your clocks."

After replacing the batteries, homeowners should test the alarms. Smoke alarms should be installed on every level of your home, especially inside each bedroom and hallways near sleeping areas. Carbon monoxide, or CO, detectors should also be installed near sleeping areas.

Mann suggested replacing a smoke alarm if it's more than 10 years old, even if it seems to work properly. The useful life of a smoke alarm is usually 10 years.

After making sure the alarms work properly, Mann recommends creating and practicing a home fire escape plan. Each member of the household must be able to identify more than one way to get out of the home and reach a meeting place away from the home, such as a neighbor's porch or a telephone pole across the street, so that each person can be accounted for in an emergency.

"A home fire escape plan should also be reviewed and practiced on a regular basis," Mann said. "Families can make this part of their twice-yearly battery replacement habit, too."

More information about fire prevention and safety is available online at For more information about the Office of the State Fire Commissioner and the fire service in Pennsylvania, visit

Media contact: Ruth A. Miller, 717-651-2009

SOURCE Pennsylvania Office of the State Fire Commissioner