Chief Mark Klose is pleased to announce that the Rochester Fire Department is participating in a federal grant program that will allow firefighters to provide and install smoke and carbon monoxide alarms for residents in need.
The Rochester Fire Department will offer free smoke and carbon monoxide alarms to residents of owner-occupied homes where senior citizens and/or children reside. In the coming weeks, Rochester firefighters will visit eligible homes and assess their need for smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, then install the devices throughout those dwellings.
Rochester is one of just 21 communities selected to participate in the Get Alarmed New Hampshire Fire Prevention and Safety Grant program through the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
To qualify, single family homes must be owner-occupied and either have children age 5 and under and/or adults over the age of 60 living in the home. Residents of rental properties should contact their landlords if they have any concerns about smoke detectors in their home.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, the populations most at risk of dying in a in residential fire are children under the age of six and adults over the age of 59.
“Fires spread extremely fast, and having smoke alarms is the most basic step anyone can take to protect themselves from tragedy,” Chief Klose said. “I’m grateful that we were selected to participate in this program, and I encourage anyone who qualifies to reach out to us and have our firefighters come assess their needs.”
“All too often we encounter homes with missing smoke alarms or alarms that are older than ten years old. The opportunity to increase the level of safety in homes across the city with a no cost option to our great residents is a win win for everyone,” said Rochester Professional Firefighters President Sam Morrill.
From 2005 to 2015, New Hampshire had 107 residential fire fatalities. In 69 percent of those cases, the homes did not have working smoke alarms. In the City of Rochester alone, three people died in fires inside single family homes without working smoke alarms in the past three years.
To sign up for a free home safety inspection and installation of free smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, please call the Rochester Fire Department at 603-335-7545.