Over the weekend, the American Red Cross Home Fire Preparedness Campaign kicked into high gear in Greater NY with safety events in the Bronx, Staten Island and Long Beach, N.Y. Partnering with local community groups in each location, nearly 75 Red Cross volunteers from across the area canvassed hundreds of homes in order to share life-saving information. By Sunday afternoon, they had installed nearly 150 free smoke detectors in homes without functioning units.
Among those supporting the Red Cross in the Bronx was New York City Councilman Andy King.
“The Red Cross has been going out to educate our friends and our neighbors of fire safety, while installing fire alarms in their apartments,” said King. “I am grateful to the Red Cross for showing up today…this part of the district has succumbed to a number of fires in our homes.”
This campaign is part of a national Red Cross safety program to reduce fire deaths and injuries by up to 25 percent over the next five years. In order to achieve these goals, Red Cross volunteers across the country have been installing free smoke detectors in neighborhoods that have seen a high instance of home fires over these past few years.
In Staten Island, for example, the Rosebank section was selected for outreach because it was there that a 5-alarm fire destroyed several homes in June of 2014.
Along with the free installations, the Red Cross has also been educating communities of the importance of having working smoke alarms on each level of their homes (near sleeping areas) and helping families create home fire escape plans to ensure that they can evacuate their homes quickly and safely. Many are unaware that you have as little as two minutes to escape a burning home.
One resident visited by the Red Cross last weekend was Mathew Rivera.
“I am grateful and appreciate that the Red Cross are installing new alarms,” expressed Rivera. “It makes me feel a little safer and I’m sure my family will feel safer too.”
With installations occurring every month moving forward, this is only the beginning of this program in Greater NY. Click here to learn more about how you can join the Red Cross to save lives.
In our region, the program is made possible by lead sponsor Airbnb.
Learn more about fire safety at http://www.redcross.org/prepare/disaster/home-fire.
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/gny or visit us on Twitter at twitter.com/redcrossny.