INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The Indiana Builders Association (IBA) recently kicked off its statewide smoke alarm donation campaign. The campaign is a partnership between IBA, local homebuilders associations, local fire departments and the State Fire Marshal’s Office. The alarms were donated by IBA with assistance from Lowes and First Alert.
“According to the National Fire Protection Association, two-thirds of home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes with no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms,” said IBA Chief Executive Officer Rick Wajda. “Properly installed and maintained smoke alarms will give families the necessary time they need to escape in the event of a fire.”
Distribution events recently took place in two locations. Members of the Builders Association of Kosciusko and Fulton Counties, based in Warsaw, Indiana, with the help of the Kosciusko County Fire Association, provided more than 50 smoke alarms and batteries to families in need of this life-saving technology in their homes. The Red Cross provided batteries for the smoke alarms.
With the help of the Parker Volunteer Fire Department and the State Fire Marshal’s Office, members of the East Central Indiana Builders Association, based in Muncie, Indiana, installed 50 smoke alarms in Parker City homes.
“Firefighters protect our families and our communities, and we are so pleased to partner with them on this campaign,” said Wajda. “Fire fatalities have steadily decreased over the past two decades, in part because of increased fire protection in homes as well as the fire prevention education efforts of the firefighters in our communities.”
“We are very supportive of fire prevention initiatives, even as some groups continue to push for mandatory fire sprinkler requirements in new homes,” said Wajda. “Smoke alarms are the most effective and efficient method to prevent fire deaths. It is clear that fatalities are concentrated in older homes; therefore in order to reduce fatalities, we need to make older homes safer. That is where working smoke alarms make a life-saving difference.”
The National Fire Protection Association encourages residents to test smoke alarms every month, change smoke alarm batteries at least once a year and replace smoke alarms every 10 years. It is also important to create and practice a family fire escape plan that includes knowing two ways out of every room and identifying a central meeting place outside.
IBA plans to distribute over 600 smoke alarms across the state and will host more distribution events in the coming months.