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Red Cross says turn back clocks, test smoke alarms

CHARLESTON, W.Va. —  (Wednesday, November 3, 2016) Daylight Saving Time ends Sunday, Nov. 6 and the American Red Cross reminds everyone to ‘turn’ their clocks back an hour and ‘test’ the batteries in their smoke alarms. The Red Cross recommends that all West Virginians have working smoke alarms on every level of their home, including inside and outside bedrooms.Red Cross

“Working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in a home fire in half,” said Erica Mani, Regional Chief Executive Officer for the American Red Cross West Virginia Region. “Turn and test is a reminder to set your clocks back and take a few minutes to push the test button to make sure all alarms are working.”

It’s also an opportunity to make sure all households are prepared for home fires and other emergencies:

  •   Create and practice a fire escape plan. Make sure everyone in the family knows how to get out of every room and how to get out of the home in less than two minutes. Select a location outside for everyone to meet.
  •   Keep disaster supplies in an easy-to-carry bag to use at home or carry in case ordered to evacuate. A variety of emergency preparedness kits and supplies are available at redcrossstore.org.
  •   Download the Red Cross Emergency App which includes content on how to prevent home fires and what to do if one occurs. The Monster Guard: Prepare for Emergencies App is a game designed for kids. Both apps are available to download for free in app stores or at redcross.org/apps.

    HOME FIRE CAMPAIGN The Red Cross responds to 66,000 disasters across the country every year and most of these are home fires. Tragically, some people lose their lives in these fires and countless others are injured. The Red Cross has launched the Home Fire Campaign to reduce the number of deaths and injuries due to home fires by 25 percent over the next five years.

    Since October of 2014, the Red Cross and partners have saved more than 110 lives as part of the Home Fire Campaign. The Red Cross is committing to install 2.5 million free smoke alarms in neighborhoods at high risk for fires, and to educate those residents about fire prevention and preparedness during the multi-year campaign.

Since the Home Fire campaign began, more than 530,000 smoke alarms have been installed in all 50 states and four territories, and it has reached more than 597,000 children through campaign youth preparedness education programs, such as The Pillowcase Project.

In West Virginia last year, the Red Cross responded to almost 700 home fires and installed over 5,400 smoke alarms in homes throughout West Virginia with a goal of installing 8,000 alarms this year. The Red Cross also educated over 3,000 West Virginia students through the Pillowcase Project. Learn how you can help by calling your local Red Cross office or visiting www.redcrosswv.org. If you would like a free smoke alarm installed in your home and live in West Virginia please call 1-844-216-8286 to schedule an appointment today.

WHAT PEOPLE CAN DO People can visit redcross.org/homefires to find out more about how to protect themselves and their loved ones from a fire. They can become a Red Cross volunteer. They can also help by donating to Red Cross Disaster Relief by visiting redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Donations to Disaster Relief will be used to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small.

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.

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