Lakewood Fire District No.1 Lists Safety Suggestions When Changing Clocks

When Daylight Savings Time begins on March 10, it is the perfect time to put safety first. The Lakewood Board of Fire Commissioners, Fire Chief Jonathan T. Yahr, Fire Prevention Specialist Sima Clapman, and members of the Lakewood Fire Department are encouraging residents to prioritize their safety by changing the batteries in smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms when adjusting their clocks. This initiative is part of the national “Change Your Clock, Change Your Battery” campaign. The campaign encourages residents to use the transition to Daylight Saving Time as a cue to replace the batteries in their devices, ensuring they remain in optimal working condition.

Fire Prevention Specialist Clapman who highlights the critical role these devices play in home safety, said, “Smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms are essential components of home safety. Regularly changing the batteries ensures these devices are ready to provide early warnings in the event of a fire or carbon monoxide presence, potentially saving lives.”

Below are some fascinating but sobering facts from the Lakewood Board of Fire Commissioners, Fire Chief Jonathan Yahr, Fire Prevention Specialist Sima Clapman, Fire Department Chaplain Rabbi Moshe Rotberg, and the members of the Lakewood Fire Department.


Two out of three fire deaths occur in homes with nonfunctioning smoke alarms.
In recent years, 70 percent of home fire deaths resulted from home fires with inoperable or no smoke alarms.
In reported home fires with inoperable alarms, 50 percent had missing, disconnected, or dead batteries.
On average, you and your family have less than two minutes to escape from the time the first smoke alarm sounds.


Known as the invisible killer, CO is colorless and odorless.
CO affects adults and children differently. If your detector goes off, check on your children and/or the elderly.
There are numerous potential CO sources, not just your stove or oven.
CO sources include kitchen range or vent, water heater pipes, furnace, dryer, heaters, attached garage, and neighboring apartments.
Standard smoke alarms do not detect carbon monoxide.
35 million people are still at risk for carbon monoxide poisoning. Are you one of them?

Calling on Shabbos and Yom Tov – Fire Department Chaplain Rabbi Moshe Rotberg says:

Even when in doubt, if there is a chance of danger, one should call the appropriate authorities.
One should not hesitate to call the Fire Department immediately. What may appear to the uneducated to be “nothing” may, in fact, be deadly.
A safer choice for Yom Tov cooking is an electrical burner, which can be placed on the stove itself and be utilized with a timer.

Working smoke and carbon monoxide (CO) alarms save lives by quickly giving you and your loved ones an early warning signal that something is wrong. Fire spreads fast but carbon monoxide is a silent killer. Working alarms are the most critical component of your escape plan.

· Be sure to have the right type of alarm. Alarms must be approved by Underwriters Laboratories (look for a UL mark) and have an audible end-of-life warning. All new and replacement smoke alarms should have a sealed 10-year battery that is non-replaceable and non-removable.

· Have both a smoke alarm and a CO alarm (or a combination smoke/carbon monoxide alarm). One type of alarm is not a substitute for the other.

· If your alarm still uses removable batteries, be sure to change them twice a year. A great reminder is changing batteries on days clocks are changed for daylight saving time. Replace these alarms with ones that contain sealed 10-year batteries as soon as possible.


· Install alarms where you sleep and on every level of your home, including basements.

· Locate alarms on the ceiling, preferably near the center of the room, but not less than four inches from a wall. If the alarm must be installed on a wall, it should be placed between four and 12 inches from the ceiling.

· Consider installing interconnected alarms so that when one alarm sounds, they all sound.

· Special alarms should be installed for those who are hard of hearing or deaf. Strobe lights and bed shakers are available.

· The following locations can either create a false alarm or avoid your detector from properly identifying the CO levels in your home: in close proximity to any fuel-burning appliance; in excessively humid areas such as your bathroom; in direct sunlight; near any sources of blowing air such as a fan, vent, or open window.


· Test your alarms regularly by pressing the test button.

· Replace alarms every 10 years or when the alarm signals that it has reached the end of life and needs to be replaced.

· Keep alarms clean by regularly dusting or vacuuming.


· If a CO alarm sounds, you and your family should get out immediately and call 911.

· If a smoke alarm sounds, be sure to execute your escape plan.

· If an alarm is set off accidentally, quiet the alarm by pushing the hush or reset button. Open windows and turn on vent fans to clear the air.

· Accidental alarms often are triggered by bathroom steam or cooking vapors. Consider relocating alarms that often sound by accident.

For more information or questions, contact contact Sima Clapman, Fire Prevention Specialist, at 732-364-5151.

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