Sacramento, CA. – December 5, 2015 — Home fires are incredibly common and very deadly as we learned this week, killing more Americans than any other natural disaster combined. Today, volunteers and partners from the American Red Cross Gold Country Region held a Home Fire Preparedness Campaign canvassing event in an effort to reduce the number of deaths and injuries from home fires.
More than 100 volunteers including partners from the Sacramento City Fire and Sacramento Metro Fire Departments went door-to-door to test and install smoke alarms and/or replace batteries, as well as educate the residents on fire safety. Red Cross volunteers and partners were able to canvass neighborhoods around Cal Expo, Arden Fair, Del Paso Heights, and North Highlands installing more than 500 smoke alarms.
Over the past year, the American Red Cross’ nationwide Home Fire Campaign is credited with saving at least 28 lives. More than 63,000 families are safer thanks to the smoke alarms and safety education they received in their homes from Red Cross volunteers, firefighters and other community partners. And more than 311,000 children have learned to be safer in emergencies from Red Cross volunteers and apps.
“In this country, seven people lose their lives every day from a home fire,” said Lilly Wyatt, Spokesperson for the American Red Cross Gold Country Region. “Even one death from a home fire is tragic. Over the next few years, the Home Fire Campaign will keep on going to help protect people and prepare them for emergencies like a fire in their home.”
In addition, PG&E is announcing its continued partnership with the American Red Cross as Lead Sponsor of the Red Cross Home Fire Preparedness Campaign with a $1 million investment to amplify these fire safety efforts throughout Northern and Central California, particularly in some of the most vulnerable communities in the area.
"PG&E is proud to partner with the American Red Cross to support their life-saving fire prevention efforts," said Tony Earley, CEO and President, PG&E. "By raising awareness around fire hazards and providing more tools to protect homes and families, we know that this work will make our communities safer and stronger."
With the support of sponsors like PG&E and many community volunteers, the Red Cross has been going door-to-door in communities from coast-to-coast to install free smoke alarms to families in need of them, share a fire escape plan worksheet and prove other fire safety information and tips.
“Thank you to PG&E for supporting this vital lifesaving effort, which we hope will have a tremendous impact on our most vulnerable communities over the next five years,” said Gary Strong, Regional CEO, American Red Cross Gold Country Region. “This planning becomes all the more urgent as we approach the winter months, a time during which we see a spike in home fires. We’re asking every household to take two simple steps that can save lives: check their existing smoke alarms and practice fire drills at home.”
Additional Safety Tips
• Practice an escape plan. Make sure everyone in the family knows how to get out of every room and how to get out of the home in less than two minutes.
• Get a kit. Keep disaster supplies in an easy-to-carry bag to use at home or carry in case ordered to evacuate.
• Make a plan. Have all household members plan what steps they should take if an emergency occurs.
• Be informed. Learn what emergencies can occur in the area and how officials notify residents should a disaster occur.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.