Daylight saving time began on March 13, and the American Red Cross Los Angeles Region reminds everyone to test your smoke alarms.

In 2022, Red Cross LA already has helped more than 320 people following more than 65 home fires with urgent needs such as emergency lodging, financial assistance and recovery planning. Most recently, the Red Cross responded to an apartment complex fire in the Crenshaw area helping 24 individuals displaced by the fire, by opening an emergency shelter and providing food, water and other services as they began their recovery.

HOW TO ‘TURN AND TEST’

Did you know working smoke alarms can cut the risk of dying in a home fire by half? That’s why it’s critical to “Turn and Test” and take these lifesaving steps to stay safe from home fires — the nation’s most frequent disaster:

Install smoke alarms on every level of your home, including inside and outside bedrooms and sleeping areas. Test alarms monthly and replace the batteries at least once a year if your model requires it.

Replace smoke alarms that are 10 years or older. That’s because the sensor becomes less sensitive over time. Check the date of your smoke alarms and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

Practice your two-minute escape plan. Make sure everyone in your household can get out in less than two minutes — the amount of time you may have to get out of a burning home before it’s too late. Include at least two ways to get out from every room and select a meeting spot at a safe distance away from your home, such as your neighbor’s home or landmark like a specific tree in your front yard, where everyone knows where to meet.

Teach children what a smoke alarm sounds like. Talk about fire safety and what to do in an emergency.

“As many as seven people die in this country every day from a home fire, but smoke alarms cut your risk in half,” said Guillermo Sanchez, Preparedness and Resiliency Manager for the Red Cross in Los Angeles. “Protect your household this weekend. Turn your clocks forward and test your smoke alarms.”

Visit redcross.org/fire for more information, including an escape plan to practice with your family. You can also download the free Emergency app by searching for “American Red Cross” in app stores.

For more information, please visit redcross.org/la.