In the early morning hours on June 2, two homes on Tilden Drive in Roseville were caught on fire. Neighbors spotted smoke coming from the homes and called their local fire department, which arrived shortly after.
Homeowner Jim Meron was asleep when the fire broke out, but his smoke detector’s loud alarm alerted him to danger.
“It’s surreal,” Meron said. “You’re not awake and you can’t believe it’s happening. You’re awestruck. No doubt, no doubt, the smoke detector saved my life.”
The two-alarm fire completely destroyed one of the homes, and the other home was damaged by smoke. Thankfully, everyone made it out safely.
Incidents like this are a clear reminder of why the American Red Cross Gold Country Region is pushing to reduce the number of home fires with the Home Fire Campaign.
The number of residential fire death actually increased by nearly 15% in 2013. Smoke alarms cut the risk of death from a fire in half, so the Red Cross is focusing the efforts of our coalition of organizations on installing smoke alarms in homes in some of the most fire-affected neighborhoods around the country.
We’re joining with fire departments and community groups to canvass neighborhoods, install smoke alarms and deliver fire prevention information in places we know have high numbers of fires.
The Red Cross also is asking every household in America to join us in taking the two simple steps that can save lives: checking their existing smoke alarms and practicing fire drills at home.
Here are some alarming facts:
- On average, seven Americans die in home fires every day.
- When smoke alarms fail to operate, it is usually because their batteries are missing, disconnected or dead. Almost one-quarter of smoke alarm failures are due to dead batteries.
- Nearly two-thirds of all fire deaths happen in homes that have no smoke
alarms or malfunctioning units.
Our region’s goal was to install 1,000 Smoke detectors in 2014-15, and with help for our local fire departments and volunteers, we have been able to install 1,131! Our other accomplishments include:
-2,190 homes canvased
-781 emergency plans developed
-436 CO monitors installed
-339 batteries in smoke alarms and CO monitors replaced
Round of applause and a big ‘thank you’ goes out to everyone who made this happen.
People can visit redcross.org/GoldCountry to find out more about how to protect themselves and their loved homes from fire and find out the location of local smoke alarm installation event.