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New smoke alarm law takes effect next month

Local News

Starting April 1st, 2019,  smoke detectors across the state will only be sold with ten year batteries. It’s a change fire officials have fought for for years. 

The National Fire Protection Association says three of every five home fire deaths happen in homes without smoke alarms or working smoke detectors. “It’s avoidable,” FASNY Vice President, Edward Tase.  “It just takes that little extra common sense and extra time to care for your family.”

In 2015, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed new safety requirements into law, which are now coming to fruition. “The smoke detectors will have batteries that can not be replaced,” said Tase.  “The are sealed units and it’s a ten year life battery.  So you just have to replace the smoke detector every ten years.” 

Fire officials say the new recommended alarms are not only safer but a cost saving measure too. “The cost of batteries each year is way more than you would spend on the cost of the ten year disposables,” said South Lockport Fire Chief Chris McClune.  “You can’t put a price on a persons life,” said Tase. “It’s better to be safe than sorry.”

While this new law is designed to cycle out smoke alarms with removable batteries, you aren’t required to get one until your current alarm stops working. New smoke detector or not, fire officials say you’ll still need to check your batteries twice a year. 

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