ATLANTA – You’ll get to snooze a little longer on Sunday, which marks the end of Daylight Saving Time. Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner John F. King is urging all Georgians to change their smoke alarm batteries when they move their clocks back one hour on Sunday, Nov. 5, at 2 a.m.
“Smoke alarms are an essential part of home fire safety plans; in the event of an emergency, they can save you, your family, and your belongings,” said Commissioner King. “However, a smoke alarm’s life-saving capacity ends with the life of its batteries. Even if your smoke alarm has not started chirping, most smoke alarm batteries should be changed twice per year according to fire safety experts. The end of Daylight Saving time is the perfect opportunity to replace the batteries in our smoke alarms and protect our families.”
Smoke alarm batteries are the difference between life and death for far too many Georgians. There have been at least 81 reported home fire fatalities in 2023, with several homes having non-functional or even missing smoke alarms. According to the National Fire Protection Association, the death rate in homes without functioning smoke alarms was more than twice as high compared to homes with working smoke alarms between 2014 and 2018.
With recent advancements in smoke alarm technology, understanding what kind of alarm you have is important. Some smoke alarm models are designed to last up to 10-years from the manufacture date and do not require regular battery replacements. Please be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions on battery replacement if you have a newer smoke alarm model.
Commissioner King also encourages Georgians to test and clean dust from their smoke alarms monthly and to practice an escape plan in case their home is ever impacted by a fire. More information on fire safety can be obtained from our office, the U.S. Fire Administration, the American Red Cross, or your local fire station.