Fire Prevention Week is Oct. 3-9, and this year’s theme is, “Learn the sounds of fire safety.” The campaign works to educate everyone about simple but important actions they can take to stay safe.

Cumberland Fire Chief Nicholas Anderson said he wants residents to know that it’s important to learn the different sounds of smoke and carbon monoxide alarms.

“When an alarm makes noise, a beeping sound or a chirping sound, you must take action,” he said. “Make sure everyone in your home understands the sounds of the alarms and knows how to respond.”

To learn the sounds of a specific smoke and carbon monoxide alarm, check the manufacturer’s instructions or search the brand and model online.

Here’s what to know:

• A continuous set of three loud beeps means smoke or fire. Get out, call 911, and stay out.

• A single chirp every 30 or 60 seconds means the battery is low and must be changed.

• All smoke alarms must be replaced after 10 years.

• Chirping that continues after the battery has been replaced means the alarm is at the end of its life and the unit must be replaced.

• Make sure smoke and CO alarms meet the needs of all family members, including those with sensory or physical disabilities.

To keep one’s home safe from fire, make sure to have working smoke alarms. Test smoke and carbon monoxide alarms monthly. If the alarms have regular batteries, change them every time you change your clocks.

“Stay ahead of the beep,” said Anderson.

Residents only have between one and three minutes to get out of the house if there is a fire. Working smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms save lives, Anderson emphasized.

“We would be very happy to pull up to your house if there was a fire and see your entire family outside,” he said. “Working smoke alarms can make that happen.”

The National Fire Protection Association is the sponsor of National Fire Prevention Week, which commemorates the Great Chicago Fire of Oct. 8-10, 1871.

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