News Advisory: Smoke Alarm Saturday - June 1, 2024

Greensboro, NC - In response to the alarming increase in fire-related fatalities across North Carolina, the Office of State Fire Marshal, Kidde, State Farm, NASFM and the American Red Cross have joined forces to mitigate fire risks in homes statewide.

Smoke Alarm Saturday, an annual one-day statewide smoke alarm canvassing event, aims to raise awareness about the critical importance of having operational smoke alarms in every home. A dedicated team of firefighters and volunteers will canvass neighborhoods statewide, offering free distribution and installation of smoke alarms.

What: Smoke Alarm Saturday Kickoff Event
When: June1, 2024, 9:30 a.m.
Where: Greensboro Fire Training Center, 1514 North Church Street, Greensboro, NC

This year, 82 Fire Departments across North Carolina are participating in Smoke Alarm Saturday, demonstrating a commitment to saving lives. The initiative aims to canvass a total of 5,304 homes, providing 3,825 smoke alarms requested by the community. The goal for 2024 is to distribute 3,825 alarms, surpassing the 2023 record of 3,048 alarms.

In 2023, North Carolina experienced 146 fire-related deaths, marking one of its deadliest years. As of the current year, 63 fatalities have been recorded statewide. Of particular concern are the significant numbers of fatal fires occurring during the early morning hours. Between 2020 and 2023, 40 deadly fires occurred between 1-2 a.m., highlighting the need for increased awareness and preparedness during these vulnerable times.

Harnett County recorded the highest number of fire fatalities in 2023, with 10 deaths. Guilford County has the highest three-year average, with 22 deaths, indicating an ongoing need for focused fire safety initiatives in these regions.

State Fire Marshal Brian Taylor emphasizes the pivotal role of smoke alarms in preventing injuries and fatalities, stressing the importance of ensuring every level of the home, including every bedroom, is equipped with a functioning smoke alarm.

“Everyone should have access to working smoke alarms,” said Stephanie Berzinski, Fire Educator, Kidde. “With fires burning hotter and faster than ever before, a smoke alarm is critical, doubling your chances of safely escaping a house fire.”

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