Paterson events are part of national effort to install 100,000 alarms in 2 weeks
PATERSON, NJ, December 10, 2019—The American Red Cross has selected Paterson as New Jersey’s signature city for the nationwide Sound the Alarm home fire safety initiative in Spring 2020. Beginning on April 18, volunteers throughout the country will help install 100,000 free smoke alarms during a two-week push of Sound the Alarm home fire safety events, including those in Paterson.
Today’s announcement was made by Paterson Mayor Andre Sayegh and Red Cross Regional CEO Rosie Taravella, together with Paterson Fire Chief Brian McDermott and Paterson natives Victor Cruz (ESPN Analyst and Former NFL Player) and Fetty Wap (Rap Artist), during a press conference at the Fire Headquarters in Paterson.
“We are elated to be selected as New Jersey’s Signature City,” said Mayor Andre Sayegh. “This partnership with the American Red Cross is a lifesaving initiative. We want to make sure that the residents of the City of Paterson are safe in their homes and the installation of smoke alarms through the Sound the Alarm campaign will do just that. I will also like to thank the American Red Cross for choosing the City of Paterson and the Paterson Fire Department for their continuous hard work.”
WHAT IS SOUND THE ALARM The American Red Cross is rallying 30,000 volunteers and partners nationwide to install 100,000 free smoke alarms and help families create home fire escape plans as part of a two-week push of Sound the Alarm events in 100 cities with a high risk of home fires—which kill more people in a typical year in the U.S than all other natural disasters combined. Most deaths occur in homes without working smoke alarms.
“Working smoke alarms reduce the risk of fatalities in a home fire by 50 percent,” said Rosie Taravella, CEO, American Red Cross New Jersey Region. “Each day, Red Cross volunteers care for neighbors devastated by home fires, and we want to prevent needless tragedies from these disasters.”
OUR CAMPAIGN TO #ENDHOMEFIRES Sound the Alarm events are part of the Home Fire Campaign, which the Red Cross launched in 2014 to reduce fire deaths and injuries. To date, nearly 2 million free smoke alarms have been installed in homes across the country and more than 658 lives have been saved through the campaign. In New Jersey, Red Cross and partners have:
- Installed more than 42,000 free smoke alarms
- Made more than 19,000 households safer
- Saved 18 lives in New Jersey.
The Red Cross is looking for community groups and organizations to invite their members to join teams of volunteers, who together with firefighters and other community partners, will be canvassing Paterson neighborhoods in April, installing free smoke alarms and helping families create fire escape plans. Interested groups can learn more at SoundTheAlarm.org/NJ or Email NJSTA2020Paterson@redcross.org.
This work is made possible thanks to generous financial donors, including PSEG, a strong supporter of the Home Fire Campaign from its launch in 2014. The energy company has also supplied manpower, offering employees the opportunity to lend their support by volunteering at Sound the Alarm home fire safety and smoke alarm installation events throughout the state.
“We are grateful for the support from our partners and invite others to get behind this campaign to save lives,” said Taravella. “Help make New Jersey families safer by ensuring they have working smoke alarms and know how to stay safe from home fires.”
SIMPLE STEPS TO SAVE LIVES As part of the Home Fire Campaign, the Red Cross is calling on everyone to take two simple steps that can save lives: practice fire drills at home and check their existing smoke alarms.
There are several things families and individuals can do to increase their chances of surviving a fire:
- Create a home fire escape plan that includes at least two ways to escape each room and a meeting spot to reunite after escaping.
- Practice the plan until everyone can get out in less than two minutes.
- 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.
- If someone does have alarms, test them today. If they don’t work, replace them.
People can visit redcross.org/SoundTheAlarmNJ to find out more about how to protect themselves and their loved ones from fire, access free fire safety resources, and learn more about the Home Fire Campaign.
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 cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.
About the American Red Cross in New Jersey:
The American Red Cross provides programs and services to a population of 8.8 million in New Jersey. The Red Cross trains and mobilizes more than 4,400 volunteers who support the delivery of services throughout the state. In New Jersey last year, the Red Cross responded to more than 820 local disasters, mostly home fires, helping 2,150 displaced families; collected more than 94,500 units of blood through blood drives and Red Cross Blood Donation Centers; provided more than 7,230 military family case services with emergency messages, helping families find assistance and/or get counseling and referrals; and trained 114,570 people with life-saving skills in preparedness, CPR, AED use, first aid and aquatics. For more information, please visit redcross.org/NJ and follow us on Twitter @NJRedCross.org.
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