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March 31, 2004
This weekend 'Change your clock, change your batteries'
Fire Chief William Stewart urges everyone to change their smoke alarm and
carbon monoxide detector batteries this weekend when setting their clocks
ahead. "The protection you receive from these devices is paramount to your
personal life safety," Chief Stewart stated, "so capitalize on this protection
by changing your batteries."

Most home fires start when people are asleep. Instead of waking you up, smoke
from a fire can put you into an even deeper sleep. A working smoke alarm will
detect smoke and immediately sound to alert you. This early warning will
increase the chances for survival of you and your loved ones by providing more
time to escape. The majority of fire deaths occur in homes that don't have
working smoke alarms. By simply installing and maintaining your smoke alarms,
the risk of dying in a home fire are cut in half. After you change your smoke
alarm batteries, test your alarms by pressing the test button.

Smoke alarms are inexpensive, easy to install and should be tested regularly.
By gently vacuuming your alarm, you can prevent a build-up of dust that can
activate false alarms or prevent your alarm from detecting the smoke from a
fire. In addition to maintaining smoke alarms, families should develop a
step-by-step home escape plan so that all members, especially children and
older adults, are knowledgeable and confident about how to escape in the event
of a fire.

For more information visit the Toronto Fire Service's Web site at

Media contact:
David Craig, Chief of Public Education, Toronto Fire Services,



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