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Red Cross, Emera Maine and D-F Fire Department install free smoke alarms

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DOVER-FOXCROFT — The American Red Cross of Maine, Emera Maine and the Dover-Foxcroft Fire Department are making households safer through the installation of free smoke alarms and home fire safety education.

In March the partners installed 129 free smoke alarms in 34 Dover-Foxcroft homes. Over two weekends home fire safety teams helped residents create emergency escape plans, provided other preparedness information, replaced batteries as needed in existing alarms and installed new smoke alarms –- all free of charge. This event was made possible thanks to the efforts of community volunteers and the Dover-Foxcroft Fire Department and to a grant from Emera Maine.

“Working together, we are making our neighbors safer,” said Fire Chief Joseph Guyotte. “People often don’t realize that they have only about two minutes to escape a home fire. Working smoke alarms can make all the difference. In fact, they reduce the risk of death by half.”

The home fire safety and installation event in Dover-Foxcroft was part of the ongoing Red Cross effort to reduce home fire deaths and injuries. Home fires kill seven people each day in the U.S., more than all other natural disaster combined.

Since the Red Cross launched its Home Fire Campaign in 2014, it has, with its partners installed 1.3 million smoke alarms nationally, including more than 12,000 in Maine. At least 381 lives have been saved because of these efforts. Last year, eight people’s lives were saved in Farmingdale due to the efforts of the Home Fire Campaign.

“We’re pleased to have partnered with the Red Cross on successful Home Fire Campaign events in Dover-Foxcroft, Ellsworth and Machias,” said Charlene McQuaid, vice president, HR and External Affairs, for Emera Maine. “Safety is at the forefront of all we do at Emera Maine, so we’re pleased to help the Red Cross continue doing great work to make Maine people safer.”

“You can be better prepared in the event of a home fire by taking some simple steps,” said Kristen Simas, the Red Cross disaster program manager for Piscataquis, Penobscot and Aroostook counties. “Practice fire drills at home and create an escape plan that includes at least two ways to escape from each room. Test your smoke alarms once a month and make sure you have them on every level of your home, including inside and outside bedrooms.”

For more preparedness information, visit www.redcross.org/get-help/how-to-prepare-for-emergencies/types-of-emergencies/fire

Photo courtesy of American Red Cross Maine
MAKING THE COMMUNITY SAFER — American Red Cross volunteers Alex McKeow, left, and Nina Caputo load supplies in preparation to install free smoke alarms and provide home fire safety education to Dover-Foxcroft residents. The Red Cross partnered with Emera Maine and the Dover-Foxcroft Fire Department and installed 129 free smoke alarms in 34 homes last month. Working smoke alarms reduce the risk of death in a home fire by half.

Photo courtesy of American Red Cross Maine
FREE SMOKE ALARMS AND FIRE SAFETY EDUCATION — Kristen Simas, center, American Red Cross disaster program manager, assigns volunteer teams to install free smoke alarms and provide home fire safety education to residents of Dover-Foxcroft. The partnership of the Red Cross, Emera Maine and the Dover-Foxcroft Fire Department aims to reduce home fire deaths and injuries.

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