Red Cross initiative provides smoke alarms to homeowners

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CLARKE COUNTY, Miss. (WTOK) - A simple smoke alarm could mean the difference between life and death if a fire breaks out at home. That is why the American Red Cross has started a national campaign to help distribute free smoke alarms.

“It is a 5 year initiative that we have going on right now, attempting to reduce injury and death from home fires by about 25% over that five year period,” explained Angie Grajeda, Disaster Program Manager with the American Red Cross.

Members of the American Red Cross spent the week in Clarke County, installing new smoke alarms in homes who don’t have them or don’t have a working alarm.

“This is really trying to get in front of those disaster’s and give people a better opportunity to be better prepared and to make sure they are able to escape their home should it catch on fire,” said Grajeda.

House fires are the number one disaster that the America Red Cross responds to and by installing smoke alarms in nearly 50 homes in Clarke County, they are trying to reduce the number of deaths due to house fires.

“For the state of Mississippi Clarke County ranks towards the top as far as deaths related to fires so we really wanted to make sure that we hit this area,” said Grajeda.

By simply filling out paper work and a quick 5 minutes of time, a new smoke alarm could be placed in a home and one home owner who received the alarms in her home is grateful to gain them.

“I appreciate them because I have never had one before and I think they are very much needed,” said Molly Shanks.

By being proactive and having working smoke alarms, it can help homeowners stay proceeded all hours of the day and as Shanks explains, everyone should get a working smoke alarm.

“I think so, they should,” said Shanks. “Because you know everything is happening with fires breaking out everywhere.”

To find out how you can receive a free smoke alarm in your home you can contact the American Red Cross at (601)582-8152.