STOW, Mass. (WWLP) – The state’s Department of Fire Services (DFS) has created a new public service announcement campaign geared toward older adults in an effort to increase smoke alarm awareness.
The “Dear Grandma / Querida Abuela” commercials began airing on television and radio stations in both Spanish and English languages in the Boston, Worcester, and Springfield areas in early January.
According to a news release sent by the DFS, older adults are at greater risk of dying in a fire. While people 65 and older make up about 17% of the population in Massachusetts, they were about 50% of last year’s deadly fire victims.
“In Massachusetts and nationwide, people over 65 have a disproportionately high risk of dying in a fire,” said State Fire Marshal Ostroskey. “Everyone should have working smoke alarms in their homes, but we developed this PSA to reach older adults in particular because of the higher statistical risk they face. Installing smoke alarms on every floor of the home, checking them regularly, and replacing them after 10 years can dramatically reduce that risk.”
The PSAs are available on the DFS YouTube channel. They complement the DFS Senior SAFE program, which provides grant funding for local fire departments to provide fire and life safety education for older adults.