Staff Reports

The Miami Fire Department is teaming up with the Ottawa County Health Department, the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Saturday, September 24th, 2011 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. to provide smoke alarms to the city of Miami.

Since October 2008, OSDH has partnered with county health departments and fire departments across the State to organize Smoke Alarm Programs in over 100 communities, installing over 7,000 smoke alarms in 4,000 homes.

Hundreds of Oklahomans suffer injuries as a result of house fires and approximately 70 Oklahomans are killed each year.

The CDC reports that two-thirds of lives could have been saved if a working smoke alarm was present in the home at the time of the fire. It is not uncommon for firefighters to find smoke alarms with batteries that do not work or batteries that have been removed from alarms. Please take a moment to check the smoke alarms in your home and contact the fire department if you have one that is not working.

The most common causes of house fires in Oklahoma are:

Cigarettes: Cigarettes/smoking start 15% of house fires in Oklahoma. Four out of five people injured die from these types of fires.

Cooking: Cooking may not seem dangerous, but it causes many injuries to adults and children, and it can also cause house fires.

Heating equipment: Devices such as space heaters, gas heaters, wood stoves, and fireplaces result in 15% of fires in Oklahoma homes.

Children playing with fire: In fires caused by children playing with fire, two out of three people killed were under 5 years old.

Hot spots: Hot spots (candles, overloaded wall sockets/extension cords, liquids that burn easily) in a home can cause a house fire.

The Miami Fire Department is committed to reducing injuries and saving lives from house fires, and currently has 10-year, lithium battery smoke alarms available to families that do not have working smoke alarms in their homes.

Firefighters and volunteers will be going door-to-door to install working smoke alarms in your home, help your family develop a fire escape plan, and provide fire prevention tips.

We are excited to have the opportunity to better develop a safer community by providing this service to you free of charge. Remember - smoke alarms save lives.

For more information or to volunteer for the smoke alarm canvass, please call the Miami Fire Department at (918) 541-2321 or the Ottawa County Health Department at (918) 540-2481.