Home Fire Campaign Credited with Saving 7 Lives
Seven times a day someone in this country dies in a home fire. Countless others suffer injuries. To combat these tragic statistics, the Red Cross has launched the Home Fire Campaign, a nationwide initiative to reduce the number of deaths and injuries due to home fires by 25 percent by the end of 2019.
The Home Fire Campaign involves Red Cross workers joining with local fire departments and community groups to visit neighborhoods at high risk for fires. Those visits include educating people about fire safety through door-to-door visits and installation of free smoke alarms.
As part of the Home Fire Campaign, the American Red Cross Central and Southern Illinois Region has installed more than 2,000 free smoke alarms this year and expects to top 4,000 installations by June 30, 2016.
“Seven lives have been saved in our region because of the Home Fire Campaign,” said Betsy Pratt, Regional Chief Executive Officer for the American Red Cross Central and Southern Illinois. “Knowing that seven people in our area are alive today because of the Home Fire Campaign is almost overwhelming; it makes you realize the lifesaving impact of this campaign and the importance of smoke alarms.”
Last spring, volunteers installed smoke alarms in the home of a young family of five in Quincy, Illinois. Volunteers helped the family to create a home fire escape plan and encouraged the family to regularly check the smoke alarms and practice their home escape plan. In early 2016, the newly installed smoke alarms alerted the family to a fire in their home and thankfully, the family was able to escape.
In April of 2015, volunteers did a Home Fire Campaign canvassing event in a Decatur, Illinois neighborhood determined to be at high-risk for home fires. Volunteers went door-to-door sharing information with residents about home fire preparedness and installing free smoke alarms. In early February, one of the homes in that neighborhood had a devastating fire. The newly installed smoke alarms alerted the residents and they were able to escape the home and call the fire department.
The Home Fire Campaign is happening all over the country and Home Fire Campaign volunteers have installed nearly 250,000 free smoke alarms resulting in 69 lives saved, including the seven lives saved here in the Central and Southern Illinois Region.
If you would like to volunteer to be a part of the Home Fire Campaign, or are in need of smoke alarms for your home, please visit redcross.org/csil-homefire.