‘Sound the Alarm’: Red Cross installs 552 smoke alarms

Published 11:25 am Saturday, February 4, 2023

Request free smoke alarms today; Events to continue all year long

NEW ORLEANS, FEB 1, 2023 — Powered by volunteers and community partners, the American Red Cross of Louisiana installed 552 smoke alarms and made 298 homes safer in Louisiana last month as part of its signature events to Sound the Alarm. Save a Life.

“We are grateful to everyone who supported Sound the Alarm events in Baton Rouge, Kenner and Duson to help keep hundreds of our neighbors safe from home fires,” said Shawn Schulze, CEO of Louisiana Red Cross. “Home fires are a constant threat across Louisiana, accounting for most of our disaster responses. These recent events and our year-round efforts will make a lasting difference to help save lives and protect those who are most vulnerable.”

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Sound the Alarm is part of the American Red Cross Home Fire Campaign, which launched nationwide in 2014 with the goal of reducing deaths and injuries from home fires. Since its inception, the American Red Cross has installed 2.4 million smoke alarms, including 42,000 in Louisiana and 18,000 in Greater New Orleans.

Home fires claim seven lives a day in the U.S. but having working smoke alarms can cut the risk of death by half. As part of its door-to-door canvassing efforts, Red Cross volunteers also provide home fire safety information – informing residents to have a plan to escape their home in less than 2 minutes, drawing out the plan on paper alongside them and discussing safety tips to prevent the most frequent causes of home fires, such as cooking.

This year, Louisiana Red Cross held signature events in Baton Rouge and Kenner. Volunteers also organized a smaller event in Duson, about 20 minutes west of Lafayette. The campaign to #EndHomeFires is constant, and more smoke alarm installation events will take place across the state this year, including on Feb. 11 in Alexandria.

Anyone in Louisiana can request a free smoke alarm and home fire safety presentation at any time via www.soundthealarm.org/louisiana.

BY THE NUMBERS: During this year’s Sound the Alarm period in Louisiana, volunteers installed several hundred smoke alarms and made hundreds of households safer by going door-to-door on three consecutive weekends. A breakdown of each event follows:

On Jan. 14 in Duson, Red Cross volunteers and partners installed 108 smoke alarms and made 58 homes safer.

On Jan. 21 in Baton Rouge, Red Cross volunteers and partners installed 288 smoke alarms and made 148 homes safer.

On Jan. 28 in Kenner, Red Cross volunteers and partners installed 156 smoke alarms and made 92 homes safer.

MAKING LOCAL HOMES SAFER: Nixon Luna of Baton Rouge is among residents who received support during the Jan. 21 Sound the Alarm event, where Red Cross volunteers also shared information on the causes of home fires, what to do if a fire starts and how to create an escape plan.

Luna praised “professionalism” displayed by the volunteers who helped make his home safer.

“I’m very happy and content, knowing that I will feel safer,” Luna said. “I want to say thank you to everyone who came.”

MAKING A DIFFERENCE: 1,505 LIVES SAVED AND COUNTING: These Sound the Alarm events are a critical part of the national Red Cross Home Fire Campaign, which has helped save at least 1,505 lives since launching in October 2014, including 27 throughout Louisiana.

THANK YOU! This work is made possible thanks to the generous support of Louisiana sponsors, partners and volunteers: Acadian Ambulance Service, Entergy, the Gardere Initiative, the Louisiana State Fire Marshal’s Office and the Morris Bart Law Firm.

About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides comfort to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; distributes international humanitarian aid; and supports veterans, military members and their families. The Red Cross is a nonprofit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to deliver its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or CruzRojaAmericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.