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MLK Day of Service Home Fire Campaign Events

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The American Red Cross Central and South Texas Region and its partners will install free smoke alarms and educate residents on fire safety in the month of January as part of its nationwide Home Fire Campaign (HFC). Like many people and organizations across the country, the Red Cross intends to honor the memory of Dr. King by volunteering to help the community on a nationwide MLK Day of Service

Red Cross volunteers and partners will canvass neighborhoods that are at high risk for home fire, install smoke alarms in homes that need them, and provide life-saving home fire preparedness information like escape plan templates. But this is only possible with the help of generous volunteers who are willing to donate their time to help their community.  

SIGN UP TO VOLUNTEER: People can visit the links below to sign up to volunteer at the smoke alarm installation event in their community. Events will take place on Saturday, January 14th with one exception; the event in San Antonio will take place on Saturday, January 21st. Morning and afternoon shifts are available at every event; lunch will be provided. Corporate volunteers and groups are also encouraged to sign up. Call 512-928-4271 for more information.

“Installing smoke alarms cuts the risk of someone dying from a home fire in half,” said Marty McKellips, Regional Chief Executive Officer for the American Red Cross Serving Central and South Texas. “Almost every day, we respond to help families after a home fire has taken everything from them. This is something we can do to stop the disaster before it happens.”

IMPACT OF HOME FIRES & RED CROSS RESPONSE:  Seven times a day someone in this country dies in a home fire and on average 36 people suffer injuries as a result of home fires every day. To combat these tragic statistics, the Red Cross has launched a nationwide campaign to reduce the number of deaths and injuries due to home fires by 25 percent by 2020. Since 2014 the Home Fire Campaign has saved 116 lives nationwide.

Home fires remain the biggest disaster threat to individuals and families in the United States and the number one disaster the Red Cross responds to in America. This campaign is in direct response to that dire threat, with the Red Cross committed to install 2.5 million free smoke alarms in neighborhoods at high risk for fires, and to educate those residents about fire prevention and preparedness.

HOME FIRE SAFETY, A FEW SIMPLE STEPS: Most home fires can be prevented. The Red Cross is asking everyone to take two simple steps that can save lives: check their existing smoke alarm and practice fire drills at home.

There are several things families and individuals can do to increase their chances of survival in a fire:

  1. If someone doesn’t have smoke alarms, install them.  At a minimum, put one on every level of the home, inside bedrooms and outside sleeping areas. Local building codes vary and there may be additional requirements where someone lives and practice.
  2. If someone does have alarms, test them today.  If they don’t work, replace them.
  3. Make sure everyone in the family knows how to get out of every room and the home in less than two minutes.
  4. Practice the plan with home fire drills.  What’s the household’s escape time?  An individual only has two minutes.


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 visit or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.