Adding fire monitoring to a wireless home alarm system seems such a logical course of action, it’s amazing that more people don’t do it – especially when they have children. Then again, there are plenty of alarm companies who charge a lot for the smoke & heat sensors, and who add a chunk of change to the monthly fee for a service that does not cost them any extra. The best alarm companies include fire monitoring at no additional cost to you. And when I read stories like this one from New Canaan, Connecticut, an eastern suburb of New York City, I am reminded of why FrontPoint recommends fire monitoring to every one of its customers.
The New England and Tri-state area [NY, CT, & NJ] experienced many tragic fires this past year that resulted in fatalities. These fatal fires did not just take the life of a single person. These were fires with multiple fatalities. In investigating these tragic fires it was discovered that most of the structures did not have any operable smoke alarms. These situations could have been avoided with education in fire prevention and the installation of smoke alarms.
Fire Stats from the Experts
According to the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA), there were more than 1.4 million fires reported in the United States in 2009. This translated into 3,320 civilian deaths and 16,705 civilian injuries. The New Canaan career firefighters urge all citizens to install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. A working smoke alarm provides early warning and critical extra seconds to escape, which is especially important during nighttime fires.
It’s Smoke Inhalation that Kills
Many people mistakenly believe they will be awakened by the smell of smoke. In reality, smoke disorients people and contributes to more fire deaths than actual burns. Besides installing smoke detectors and changing smoke alarm batteries, the New Canaan firefighters recommend that residents identify a meeting place and practice escape routes with the entire family. Remember, once you’re out, stay out, and only dial 911 from a neighbor’s house or from a cordless or cellular phone.
And Directly from the NFPA…
Smoke alarms save lives. Nearly two-thirds of home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes with no smoke alarms. Smoke detectors should be installed in every bedroom, outside the bedroom area and one detector on every floor. Having a working smoke alarm cuts the chances of dying in a fire in half. Each year, nearly 3,000 people die in U.S. homes fires. Smoke alarms should be installed away from the kitchen to prevent false alarms. Replace batteries in all smoke alarms at least once a year. When you change your clocks for daylight savings change your detector batteries. Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old. Smoke rises; install smoke alarms following the manufacturer’s instructions high on a wall or on a ceiling. Save manufacturer’s instructions for testing and maintenance. — The National Fire Protection Association website.
Most reputable alarm companies (including FrontPoint) recommend at least one monitored smoke and heat sensor for every system they sell. The main reason is that your standard non-monitored smoke detector is really just a noisemaker. Yes, it’s much better than nothing, and we know it has saved lives – but don’t you want to know the fire department is being summoned as soon as possible? You may be away, or – much worse – overcome by smoke in your own home. That’s when you definitely want a system that quickly and proactively reaches out the people who can help. For more information, here’s a link to my previous post on monitored fire protection.
FrontPoint continues to provide the latest in interactive, wireless home security, including 24-hour fire monitoring for no additional monthly fee. We are proud members of the NFPA, and fully support their goal of protecting us in our homes and workplaces – just one more reason why FrontPoint is known as the #1 ranked alarm company in the US.