It has been 10 years since the NSW Government introduced smoke alarm legislation. Sadly, more than half of fatal home fires between 2000 and 2014 were in properties without a smoke alarm, highlighting how critical is it to have a smoke alarm installed.
Every year, Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW) run a campaign to remind households to change their batteries, but now that we have reached the 10-year mark, FRNSW are urging households to change their out-dated smoke alarms with the latest photoelectric alarms.
Why photoelectric and not ionisation? Photoelectric alarms are more advanced and are widely regarded as being superior to ionisation alarms in most circumstances. Photoelectric alarms provide faster warning and will keep you and your family safe for the next 10 years. Photoelectric alarms are more effective at detecting the types of fires that are most likely to cause a home fire death, which are smouldering fires. They are also less likely than other alarms to go off when you are cooking or using the shower.
When purchasing a new alarm, look for the word ‘photoelectric’ on the packaging. Smoke alarms with a radioactive symbol indicates it is an ionisation smoke alarm. You can purchase photoelectric alarms from your local hardware store and supermarket.
In addition to urging households to update their smoke alarms, FRNSW is asking all NSW residents to take the time to check in on 10 friends or family members to ensure they update their smoke alarms as well. Whilst this campaign is targeting NSW residents, this safety message is just as relevant across the country, so get onto your interstate friends and family and spread the word!
FRNSW is also encouraging households to take photos helping others replace their smoke alarm and to share it on social media using the following hashtags #ReAlarm #FRNSW
For more top safety tips on re-alarming, head to the FRNSW website and follow @FRNSW on Twitter.