New Jersey Division of Fire Safety Distributes Smoke and CO Alarms through Operation 7: Save A Life

Distribution Reaches the Elderly and Needy throughout the State

TRENTON, N.J. The New Jersey Department of Community Affairs’ (DCA), which oversees the Division of Fire Safety, today announced that free smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors, underwritten by WABC7 television and Kidde Corporation, will be distributed in Hunterdon, Hudson and Mercer Counties as part of the 2014 WABC7 Operation 7: Save A Life Campaign.  Fire officials from the tri-state area joined anchorman Bill Ritter of WABC 7 for the kickoff of the program in early January. The free alarm giveaway program, which provides units to deserving residents, has seen the distribution of thousands of smoke and CO alarms in the last few years. 

“This valuable partnership with WABC7 ensures that these units are put into homes in vulnerable populations where they are needed,” said DCA Commissioner Richard E. Constable, III. “New Jersey families will benefit from these smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors, which will protect them from the dangers of fire.”

“We are extremely pleased to report that the New Jersey Division of Fire Safety is seeing to the distribution of these vital life saving devices to deserving citizens throughout New Jersey,” said William Kramer, Jr., Acting Director of the New Jersey division of Fire Safety and State Fire Marshal. “In close cooperation with our local fire department partners, this grass roots program is giving fire protection to the community members who need it the most.”

Kramer noted that more than 2,000 alarms, including special 10-year lithium battery smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors, were included in this this giveaway to city firefighters to in-turn distribute within their respective communities. The most recent occurred in Ocean County where departments representing the county’s largest municipalities, including Lakewood and Toms River Townships, were on hand to receive alarms.

The remaining schedule for local alarm distribution includes the Lebanon Boro Firehouse in Hunterdon County on July 29th, Jersey City Fire Headquarters in Hudson County on July 30th and Hamilton Fire House Station 15 in Mercer County on July 31st.

Over the last 13 years that the Division of Fire Safety has participated in this cooperative program sponsored by Kidde, more than 129,780 smoke alarms have been distributed. Kidde Fire Safety (Kidde) is the leading manufacturer of residential fire safety products, including the 10-year sealed lithium battery operated smoke alarm.

Currently, two-thirds of all home fire deaths occur in residences with no smoke alarm or no working smoke alarm, primarily due to dead or missing batteries, according to the National Fire Protection Association. Smoke alarms with sealed-in 10-year batteries are tamperproof and eliminate the need to replace the battery, something many homeowners fail to do.

According to the National Fire Protection Association:

  1. Three out of five home fire deaths resulted from fires in properties without working smoke alarms.
  2. The risk of dying in reported home structure fires is cut in half in homes with working smoke alarms.
  3. Smoke alarm failures usually result from missing, disconnected, or dead batteries.

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For more information on the WABC7 Operation 7: Save A Life Campaign, contact Paul F. Elenio FCAR 2, Local Assistance Unit NJ Division of Fire Safety at 609-633-6147.

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