Over 93 percent of homes in the U. S. now
have at least one smoke alarm. As more smoke alarms have been
installed, the residential fire death rate has fallen substantially.
However, the number of smoke alarms that don't work is increasing,
and experts predict that fire deaths will increase again if
we do not solve the problem of inoperable smoke alarms. Estimates
of inoperable smoke alarms range from one third to one half
- The two most common reasons for inoperable smoke alarms
- Disabling them to prevent nuisance alarms.
- Neglecting to replace units that are past their 10-year
Both problems are easily solved, but
the sad truth is that has been no concerted effort in the
fire service to attack the problem. The section below on
how to reduce nuisance alarms gives several tips on how
to keep your smoke alarms working.