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Fire officials remind Missourians to change batteries in smoke detectors

Not only do you need to set your clocks back an hour starting at 2 a.m. on Sunday to enjoy that extra hour or sleep, also make sure to check your smoke alarms this weekend.

State Fire Marshal Tim Bean encourages Missourians to use part of the hour they gain to test smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, change batteries and practice their family fire escape plan.

As the temperatures get lower this season, the chances for house fires rise.

“The overwhelming majority of fire deaths in Missouri this year have occurred in homes without any smoke alarm at all or where the alarms did not work, usually because of dead batteries,” Fire Marshal Bean said.

Across the nation, according to the United States Fire Administration:

Three out of five home fire deaths occur in homes without working smoke alarms. Thirty-eight percent of home fire deaths result from fires in which no smoke alarm was in the home. The risk of dying in a home fire is cut in half in homes with working smoke alarms. One-half of home fire deaths occur between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m., when most people are asleep.

Bean also reminds Missourians that they should have carbon monoxide alarms for their homes. Carbon monoxide is an odorless, tasteless, invisible gas that can be deadly if undetected.

The fire marshal also suggests checking your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms monthly by pushing the test button and to replace smoke alarms every 10 years because they lose their effectiveness over time.

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