American Red Cross encourages fire safety with free smoke detectors

American Red Cross encourages fire safety with free smoke detectors

LORAIN, OH (WOIO) - The American Red Cross will join forces with the Ohio National Guard, city of Lorain and Ambassador Brothers to install free smoke detectors in hundreds of homes on Saturday. Red Cross volunteers will also provide fire safety education to residents and supply free batteries to homeowners for existing smoke detectors.

"We are happy to have the help of the National Guard, the city of Lorain and a community organization, like the Ambassador Brothers, to make a large neighborhood of Lorain a safer place to live," said Katie Myers-Griffith, executive director of the American Red Cross Lake Erie/Heartland Chapter. "This initiative is meant to reduce the number of people who die in home fires by 25 percent over a five-year period."

Each year, more than 3,800 people die in fire-related deaths nationwide, while approximately 18,300 more suffer injuries in fires. More than half of these injuries and deaths occur at night while the occupants are sleeping.

Although a fire safety poll commissioned by the American Red Cross showed most adults surveyed believe it takes several minutes to escape a burning home, experts say in most cases, residents have less than two minutes to safely escape.

More than 500 homes will be visited during the Lorain Fire Safety Walk, in an area stretching from East 29th Street to East 36th Street, and from Fulton Road to Grove Avenue. The event will take place from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday.

Copyright 2015 WOIO. All rights reserved.