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How many smoke alarms do you have in your home?

Firefighters in Merseyside are asking residents to make sure they have at least one working smoke alarm on every level of their home.

Most people know a working smoke alarm can save lives by providing those vital few seconds needed to escape a fire.

But, despite the majority of homes (88%) having at least one working smoke alarm in their home, smoke alarms alert householders to a fire in England in only a third of cases.

The most common reason a smoke alarm failed to activate was because the fire was outside its range.

For this reason, Fire Kills and Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service are encouraging people in Merseyside to have a think about the smoke alarms in their home.

Group Manager Gary Oakford said: “We must all make sure that we have enough smoke alarms to cover our whole homes. If you don’t have enough, or they’re not in the right place, you might not be alerted in time.

“The vast majority of us now have at least one smoke alarm in our homes, but early detection and warning is vital to reduce the devastation a fire in the home can cause.

“That’s why it’s so important that you have enough smoke alarms and that they are in the right place to have the best chance of alerting you and your loved ones to a fire.

“You should make sure you have at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home, preferably in hallways and landings.

“Placing smoke detectors near to sleeping areas and in rooms where there are electrical appliances could give you the extra warning you need.

“It’s also important to remember that smoke alarms don’t last forever; the power might work, but the detection mechanism deteriorates with time.

“So whether they are battery operated or wired to the mains, to work at their best they should be replaced every ten years.

“If you are have less able relatives or neighbours be sure to check that their homes have enough smoke alarms in the right places too.

“And finally, don’t forget to test your smoke alarms every month.”

Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service offers these five smoke alarm top tips:

  • Install at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home.

  • The ideal position is on the ceiling, in the middle of a room or on a hallway or landing.

  • Consider fitting additional alarms in other rooms where there are electrical appliances and near sleeping areas.

  • Don’t put alarms in or near kitchens and bathrooms where smoke or steam can set them off by accident.

  • Replace your smoke alarms every ten years.

For more information, visit Fire Kills on Facebook,, or call Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service on 0800 731 5958.

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