Saturday, January 13, 2018

"Sound the Alarm" Event Installs Over 150 Smoke Detectors in Ashland Homes

On Saturday, members of the Ashland Fire Department and volunteers from the American Red Cross participated in the "Sound the Alarm" event in Ashland.

In the first nine days of the new year, the American Red Cross responded to nearly 60 percent more home fires than in 2017.

Red Cross volunteers across the country have already responded to 3,150 home fires in the first nine days of the year, compared to 2,003 fires in 2017. Some of this may be attributed to the recent string of dangerously cold days, as colder temperatures are often linked to a rise in home fires. Heating, holiday decorations, winter storms and candles all contribute to an increased risk of fire during the winter months, according to the National Fire Protection Association and the U.S. Fire Administration.

After a home fire, a Red Cross volunteer is often among the first on the scene – offering emotional support, helping those affected to find a place to stay and assisting with recovery. As of January 9, the Red Cross has already opened 4,400 cases to help a total of 12,500 people get back on their feet after home fires in 2018.

Locally, the Red Cross of Eastern Pennsylvania has responded to over 50 home fires so far this year.

As part of the Red Cross Home Fire Campaign, the Red Cross Tri-County Chapter will install free smoke alarms over the upcoming Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service weekend. The Day of Service occurs on Monday, January 15, to honor the life of Dr. King.

In Schuylkill County, on Saturday, the Red Cross Tri County Chapter, Schuylkill County American Red Cross, Ashland Fire Department, Mountainview Restoration, and other volunteers participated in the "Sound the Alarm" event in Ashland .

The smoke alarm installation event, involved volunteers canvassing Ashland neighborhoods, installing free smoke alarms, replacing batteries in existing alarms, checking working alarms,  and helping families create escape plans.

Ned Bloom, a Senior Volunteer Specialist from the American Cross said "Part of the American Red Cross is helping those recover that are affected by fire, but with events like these, We are saving lives".

The volunteers canvassed Ashland from 9:30am until 3:00pm and by the end, they installed 155 new smoke alarms throughout the borough.

Patrica Daley, disaster team captain for the Tri-County chapter of the American Red Cross, said " Thank You out to all the volunteers for coming on this cold icy day to make our alarm installation a success".

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