For Immediate Release
Press Contact: Gil Dong, Fire Marshall , (510) 981-5502

FREE SMOKE DETECTORS FOR UC STUDENTS
Smoke Detectors Save Lives

Berkeley, California (Tuesday, January 24, 2006) - The Berkeley Fire Department is pleased to announce that the University of California, Berkeley campus has donated 200 smoke detectors  to UC Berkeley students who live off-campus. Applications for these smoke detectors are available from the Environment, Health & Safety (EH&S) at UC Berkeley, or Cal Rentals, or any Berkeley Fire Station, or the Fire Administration Office located at 2100 Martin Luther King, Jr. Way.

Smoke detectors are recognized as the single most effective life-saving device in the home. Most fire fatalities occur between 2:00 and 6:00 a.m., when people are asleep and their natural “fire sensing equipment” is least effective. Fire experts agree that 40-50 percent of the 6,000 lives lost in residential fires in the country last year could have been saved if the families had used smoke detectors.

The Berkeley Fire Department encourages all residents to install a smoke alarm on every level of your home, and to test the alarms monthly. All batteries should be replaced with new ones at least once a year (we suggest in October, when daylight savings time ends). Since smoke alarms may be dependent on your home’s electrical service and might not work during a power outage, make sure your alarm uses a back-up battery.

The donation of the smoke detectors is part of the University’s “Safe Student Housing” program, that works with the City of Berkeley to ensure fire-safe residences for UC students in the community.  The program also involves fire safety training and information packets.

Smoke detectors save lives! For more information on this important program, call the Berkeley Fire Department’s Fire Prevention Division at 510-981-5585 or the EH&S Office at 510-642-3073.

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