Don’t fit smoke alarms and forget to test: HWFRS

Smoke alarm reminder website.

Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service is urging people to protect their loved ones by testing smoke alarms.

As part of the Fire Kills campaign, HWFRS encourages everyone to make fire safety a priority by ensuring they have enough smoke alarms in the home and that they work.

The devices can give someone the few extra seconds they need to escape in a fire.

While most homes across the country now have a smoke alarm fitted, most people are unaware that they have a lifespan of just 10 years on average and then need replacing.

Emma Roberts, HWFRS Head of Prevention (pictured above), said: “Smoke alarms can offer vital protection for you and your loved ones but most people simply fit and forget – they don’t know if it might be coming to the end of its lifespan or not working at all.

“For most of us, there is nothing more important than keeping our loved ones safe and secure.

“So if your alarm is getting past its best or your top floor is missing an alarm of its own, fit new ones, test them at least once a week and protect your loved ones.”

To keep your alarms in working order:

  • make sure there is at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home
  • test your smoke alarms by pushing the button every week
  • check that your smoke alarms are less than ten years old
  • change the batteries every year. Never remove them
  • ten-year sealed battery smoke alarms are the best option. They are slightly more expensive but you save on the cost of replacing batteries
  • if it is a ten-year alarm, you will need to replace the whole alarm every ten years
  • fit smoke alarms in the right place – on the ceiling in the middle of a room, on landings and hallways and near bedrooms. Also consider fitting them in rooms which have electrical appliances, like a heater or charger, or other fire risks
  • don’t put alarms in or near kitchens or bathrooms where smoke or steam can set them off by accident.
  • if it is difficult for you to fit smoke alarms yourself, contact HWFRS for help
  • take a moment to check on your loved ones who may need help to ensure they are fully protected

Anyone who thinks they might qualify for a free Home Fire Safety visit can call the HWFRS Prevention team on 0800 032 1155.

People can complete a free online Home Fire Safety check at