When Daylight Savings ended this year, ITC reminded everyone to check the batteries in their smoke detectors. This year the NSW Fire Department Commissioner asked residents to not only check their smoke detectors but to change their smoke detectors.
“There could be millions of smoke alarms out there that are about to reach their ‘use-by date’ and they need to go. We’re encouraging NSW residents to choose newer photoelectric smoke alarms that have 10-year lithium batteries. Photoelectric smoke alarms have fewer false activations and are more effective at detecting the types of fires that are most likely to result in a home fire death – smouldering fires. Only working smoke alarms help save lives,” Commissioner Mullins said. “A fire can take hold in just three minutes, filling your home with deadly smoke. A working smoke alarm gives you vital seconds to get out before you’re overcome. Stay out of harm, replace your smoke alarms and ReAlarm your home against fire ahead of winter.”
Commissioner Mullins FRNSW
Local Lane Cove electricians, JDP Electrical, are also urging people to check their Smoke Detectors. They are our guest bloggers.
Do I Detect Smoke?
Winter is coming so it’s natural for us to start preparing for the coming cold months but one thing unfortunately gets forgotten. That is, ensuring our smoke detector system is working.
As electricians we feel the need to educate you about the importance of a working smoke detector in your home. Legislation requires all NSW residents must have at least one working smoke detector installed on each level of their home. Without them you are four times more likely to die in a house fire.
Maintaining Your Smoke Detector
It’s no surprise – SMOKE DETECTORS SAVE LIVES, so why wouldn’t you make sure that the one in your home is working properly?
All smoke detectors are designed to automatically activate a low battery warning sound so you know it’s time to change the batteries. How many of us get irritated by the high pitched intermittent beep? It’s annoying we know, but that’s the idea. It’s designed so that the annoying beeping sound will force you to change the batteries, but unfortunately most of us just remove them to stop the sound and forget to replace them. What’s scary is that if a fire breaks out in your home and you are asleep, you will not smell the smoke. In fact it will put you in a deeper sleep!
The role of the Smoke Detector is to alert you that a fire has broken out in order for you to get out in time. So do yourself and your family a favour and get some batteries to install them in your current Smoke Detector.
There are many types on the market today. The preferred ones are the Photoelectric Smoke Detector Alarm system, which are most responsive to a smoldering fire. If you are looking to replace or install a new Smoke Detector Alarm system, JDP Electrical Services prefer the Photoelectric PSA Lifesaver LIF10ype Smoke Detector, which includes a 10 year lithium battery life span.
A simple power point could burn down your home
Recently JDP Electrical Services attended an emergency call out to repair an electrical hazard in a home in the Lower North Shore. The situation involved a double power point in a child’s bedroom that had a desk lamp and an oil heater plugged in. At 2am in the morning, the father was alerted and woken by the sound of their smoke detector alarm which was in his son’s bedroom. He approached the smoky room and quickly grabbed his child out of the bed and turned off the electricity from the main switchboard, then phoned the fire brigade.
These photos were taken from our phone and as you can see, the power point and the skirting board were completely burnt out. The black marking on the wall was from the smoke. This simple power point could have caused a complete house fire and if the family didn’t have a smoke detector alarm, it could have ended in tragedy. Thankfully, their smoke alarm system was in operation.
There are two possible causes why this power point burnt out. They are:
1. Either the plug(s) were not inserted fully into the power point; or 2. The wiring behind the power point within the wall was loose.
2. The wiring behind the power point within the wall was loose.
Unfortunately, in this case loose wiring behind the power point due to poor workmanship was responsible and it’s not something that is visible unless you remove the power point. As Electricians, JDP Electrical Services’ mission is to ensure that all wiring and installations are installed correctly and securely. Our motto is “Do it Once, Do it Right”.
Please maintain your smoke alarms by testing them annually when you change the batteries. They really do save lives. This incident is something we see often and luckily for this family, it didn’t end in tragedy.
Remember, a smoke alarm saves lives. It’s a sound you can live with!