ATLANTA — Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner Ralph Hudgens is urging Georgians to change the batteries in their smoke alarms at the same time they change their clocks when daylight saving time begins March 13.
In conjunction with the “Change Your Clock, Change Your Battery” fire safety program, Commissioner Hudgens says the annual change to daylight saving time is a good time to make sure your smoke alarms are functioning properly.
“Every year in Georgia we have numerous fire fatalities in homes that didn’t have smoke alarms, or where the alarms didn’t function,” Hudgens said. “If you have a smoke alarm, make sure it’s in working order. Changing the battery at least twice a year and cleaning dust from the device is an easy way to ensure continued protection of your family and your property.”
This year, 29 Georgians have died in 25 residential fires. Fire investigators determined that only two of those homes had a working smoke alarm. In 2015, 83 residential fires in the state resulted in 99 deaths. Of those 83 fires, 75 of the homes did not have a working smoke alarm.
Commissioner Hudgens encourages singles and families to plan and rehearse an escape route and have a designated meeting place outside the home that they can use in the event of a fire.
Daylight saving time starts Sunday, March 13, at 2 a.m., when clocks are set ahead one hour.