ALBANY -- Daylight saving time ends Sunday, so it's time to put new batteries in your smoke alarms.
The state Office of Fire Prevention and Control reminded New Yorkers on Friday to check their smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms and replace the batteries this weekend to make sure they are in working order when the clocks are turned back an hour.
“Working smoke alarms are the single most important tool in getting out alive during a fire. Smoke and carbon monoxide alarms can only save your life if they are functioning. Give you and your family the vital time need to escape a fire by ensuring that these life-saving devices are in working order,” the agency's commissioner, Roger Parrino Sr., in a statement.
Around 3,000 people die in residential fires in the U.S. yearly, according to the NYPD Community Affairs Bureau.
The Fireman’s Association of New York said three out of every five deaths caused by fires takes place in a home without properly working smoke detectors
About 94 percent of homes have at least one smoke detector. But according to the National Fire Prevention Association, more than a third of the alarms are not working because they have dead or missing batteries.
Smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms should be tested monthly and have new batteries put in every six months to keep them in working order, fire officials said.
They should be installed in all bedrooms, and on each level of a home.
The Fireman's Association suggests that you vacuum or blow out dust from your smoke alarms to keep them functional.
For smoke alarms with non-removable lithium batteries, you should replace the entire alarm about every 10 years, or sooner based on the manufacturer’s instructions.
You should also not take a battery out of a smoke detector to use elsewhere.
If a smoke detector starts to beep to warn about a low battery life you should replace the batteries and not just take them out to stop the alarm, fire officials said.
“We encourage all New Yorkers to use this as a reminder to update your fire safety measures in the home, especially as the cold months approach and heaters start to turn on," Ken Pienkowski, president of the Firemen's Association, said in a statement.
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