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Clocks spring forward; replace smoke alarm batteries

 Daylight saving time begins on March 10 and the American Red Cross encourages everyone to test their smoke alarms as they turn their clocks forward to make sure the devices are working.

“Working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in a home fire in half as you only have about two minutes to get out,” said Joel Sullivan, regional executive director for Red Cross Tennessee Region. “Every second counts when there’s a home fire and the sooner an alarm alerts you to a fire, the sooner you can get to a safer place. When you turn your clocks forward this weekend, test your smoke alarms too to help prevent a tragedy in your home.”

In 2023, local Red Cross volunteers responded to assist 2,527 families in Tennessee affected by home fires, which account for most of the about 65,000 disasters that the Red Cross responds to annually across the country.

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SMOKE ALARMS When turning your clocks forward this weekend, test your smoke alarms and replace the batteries if needed. Visit redcross.org/fire for more information, including an escape plan to create and practice with your family, or download the free Red Cross Emergency app by searching “American Red Cross” in app stores.

  • Install smoke alarms on every level of your home, including inside and outside bedrooms and sleeping areas.
  • Replace smoke alarms that are 10 years or older. Components such as sensors can become less sensitive over time. Follow your alarm’s manufacturer instructions.
  • Practice your two-minute home fire escape plan. Make sure everyone in your household can get out in less than two minutes — the amount of time you may have to escape a burning home before it’s too late.
  • Include at least two ways to get out of every room and select a meeting spot at a safe distance away from your home, such as your neighbor’s home or landmark like a specific tree in your front yard, where everyone can meet.

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