Christie Administration Partners with Kidde and WABC-TV Channel 7 in
15th Annual Operation 7: Save A Life Smoke Alarm Distribution Campaign

Free Smoke Alarms Available for New Jersey Families in Need

TRENTON, N.J. New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Richard E. Constable, III today announced that the Christie Administration is again partnering with Kidde and WABC-TV Channel 7 on the Operation 7: Save a Life smoke alarm distribution campaign, which is now in its 15th year. As part of the campaign, the Division of Fire Safety will distribute free smoke alarms in communities impacted by Superstorm Sandy, as well as to senior citizens, low-income residents, and households with children in the station's viewing area, which includes North Jersey and much of Central Jersey. The Division has distributed approximately 115,800 free smoke alarms to New Jersey households since joining the annual campaign.

We are always pleased to partner with WABC-TV Channel 7 in this unified effort to place these life-saving devices in the hands and in the homes of our most vulnerable residents, said Commissioner Constable. The best way to fight fire is to prevent it, and that s what this campaign does every year.

Operation 7: Save a Life seeks to increase public awareness about fire safety and prevention and focuses on how to prepare for and handle emergency situations. The campaign has helped distribute more than 670,000 smoke alarms throughout New Jersey, New York, and Long Island since its inception in 1999 to individuals who otherwise couldn t afford them. A similar program is led by WPVI-TV Channel 6 the ABC-affiliated station in Philadelphia for the South Jersey region.

The smoke alarms are donated by Kidde, a long-time sponsor of Operation 7: Save a Life. This year, Kidde donated more than 16,875 10-year sealed battery smoke alarms, a portion of which New Jersey will receive. The next phase of the campaign involves the distribution of the alarms.

New Jersey has among the lowest per capita fire death rates in the nation, according to the National Fire Protection Association, citing the state s modern fire code and its aggressive public outreach and enforcement programs. Nonetheless, state fire data collected by the Division of Fire Safety shows the onset of cold weather coincides with an increase in residential fires.

The problem of fire in our state remains particularly concentrated in one- and two-family dwellings, said Acting State Fire Marshal William Kramer, Jr. Seventy-seven percent of our civilian fire fatalities occurred in residential properties in 2011. A working smoke alarm is a must-have piece of equipment because it is family s first line of defense against fire.

Smoke alarm distribution is one part of the annual Operation 7: Save a Life campaign.  WABC-TV Channel 7 will continually air on television and post online fire safety education programs such as the Operation 7: Save a Life special hosted by Eyewitness News anchor Bill Ritter. Also, more than 7,500 Operation 7 memo boards with fire safety tips will be distributed by local fire stations. Additionally, on Saturday, February 2, in cooperation with The Home Depot, Kidde, and local fire departments, Operation 7: Save a Life will host Safety Saturday at select Home Depot locations throughout the state. The day will feature fire safety education clinics and demonstrations. A list of participating Home Depot stores can be found at

The Division of Fire Safety is the central fire service agency in the State of New Jersey, responsible for the development and enforcement of the State Uniform Fire Code, public education programs and firefighter training programs.

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