Smoke alarm assistance available for seniors

Local News

PALMER, Mass. (WWLP) – Seniors who need help testing, maintaining, or replacing smoke alarms can contact their local fire department or senior center for assistance.

According to the Town of Palmer, the fire department has carbon monoxide and smoke detectors available for seniors that are in need. To obtain one, call the Palmer Senior Center at 413-283-2670 (press 3 when prompted) to leave your name, address, and phone number.

The fire department is also urging residents to replace batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. If your device has sealed-in batteries, remove any debris and check to confirm they are functioning properly.

Check the manufacture dates printed on the back of your smoke alarms. Smoke alarms should be replaced after 10 years, and carbon monoxide alarms after five to seven years. The alarms should be photoelectric with 10-year sealed batteries.

Protect Your Home and Family with Smoke Alarms

  • Have working smoke alarms on every level of your home, outside bedrooms, at the top of open stairs and at the base of cellar stairs.
  • Maintain smoke alarms. Test them once a month.
  • If the alarm uses regular batteries, change them at least once a year. An easy way to remember is to change the batteries when you change your clocks. A “chirping” sound indicates that it’s time to change 
    the batteries.
  • Smoke alarms must be replaced every 10 years. Alarms are labeled with their date of manufacture. If there is no label, they are older than 10 years and must be replaced

Protect Your Home and Family with Carbon Monoxide Alarms

  • The law requires carbon monoxide alarms to be installed on every level of your home, including habitable portions of basements and attics, in most residences.
  • On levels with sleeping areas, carbon monoxide alarms should be installed within 10 feet of bedroom doors.
  • When purchasing a carbon monoxide alarm, be sure to look for the approval label of an independent testing company, such as Underwriter’s Laboratory (UL), International Approval Service (IAS), or Canadian Standards Association (CSA). Most carbon monoxide alarms that are sold in the Commonwealth meet these standards, but it’s a good idea to check before buying.
  • Carbon monoxide alarms may be
    • Battery operated with battery monitoring
    • Plug-ins with battery back-up
    • Low voltage systems
    • Wireless
    • Qualified combination
  • Replace carbon monoxide alarms every 5 to 7 years, depending on the make and model.
  • Newer CO alarms have a 10-year sealed battery that does not need changing. At 10 years, the entire device is replaced. 
  • If you have a plug-in model, be aware that the battery will run down during an extended power outage and may need to be replaced. 

For Landlords and Tenants

  • Nicole’s Law also requires landlords to install and maintain carbon monoxide alarms in every dwelling unit that has a source of carbon monoxide.
  • Large apartment buildings, where there is no source inside of the individual apartments, may use an alternative method to detect carbon monoxide near the furnace, boiler rooms, or garage.

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