Free smoke alarms available for retirement-age homeowners

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Smoke Detector

SAN DIEGO — Retirement-age homeowners in the San Diego area can obtain free smoke alarms and have them installed at no charge through a service offered by the Burn Institute, the agency announced Monday.

“In a fire, seconds count,” said Susan Day, executive director of the institute. “Roughly half of home-fire deaths result from fires reported at night between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m., when most people are asleep. Home smoke alarms can alert people to a fire before it spreads, giving seniors enough time to get out.”

Adults age 65 and older are two times more likely to die in a house fire than any other segment of the population, and for those over age 75, that risk nearly quadruples, according to the agency.

The devices should be installed in every bedroom, outside each sleeping area and on all floors of homes, institute officials said.

To qualify for the program, residents must be at least 62 and own their own homes. Those interested in requesting the equipment are asked to call 858- 541-2277, ext. 18.