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WFD raises smoke alarm awareness after fatal fire

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — After a fatal fire on Peachtree Ave last week, the Wilmington Fire Department decided to walk the neighborhood, educate neighbors and install smoke alarms in home that need them.

WFD went door-to-door hoping to save more lives in the future by helping prevent fires like the one that killed Steven Worsham, 54, last week.

“Three fourths of the people in the nation that die from residential house fires do not have working smoke alarms in their home,” Battalion Chief Randy Burton said.

It’s when we least expect it when we have the highest risk.

“From 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. traditionally,” Burton said. “Those are sleeping hours when folks are sleep.”

The flames are not your only threat.

“When you’re asleep, you cannot smell smoke,” Burton said. “Some people think you can, but you cannot. Your olfactory senses, your smelling senses, go away in a deep sleep. That is the reason for a smoke alarm; to alert you when you’re in a deep sleep, so you can have an escape plan to get out of your home.”

Your escape plan should include two ways out of your home and a meeting place outside.

Experts say most fires are caused by cooking, smoking or electrical, but having a working smoke alarm doubles your chances of surviving a fire and what could be a life or death situation.

If you cannot afford a smoke alarm, notify the Wilmington Fire Department, and they will come out and provide you with one.


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