Las Cruces, NM (KTSM) — Las Cruces Fire Department is encouraging residents to install new batteries in their smoke detectors when they set their clocks to ‘fall back’ one hour, this weekend.
Daylight saving time ends at 2 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 3, and the fire department urges residents to install fresh batteries in their smoke detectors when clocks are adjusted to standard time.
Most people tend to change their clocks before bedtime on Saturday night.
LCFD also suggests homeowners test smoke detectors to ensure they’re in proper working order.
To check the operation of a smoke detector, simply press and hold the alarm’s “test” button. If it beeps, or rings loudly, it’s properly working.
Consumers should avoid testing a detector by using a candle or matches placed under the alarm as repeated use of smoke to activate the device can cause them to fail when an actual fire occurs.
Smoke alarms are present in 95 percent of American homes but national studies show that 20 percent do not work due to worn or missing batteries.
That means nearly 19 million homes are needlessly at risk since the peak time for home fire fatalities is between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m., when most families are sleeping.
Studies show that a working smoke alarm can often provide the critical extra seconds needed to escape a potentially deadly blaze.
For more information on smoke alarms, contact the Las Cruces Fire Department at (575) 528-4150.