Are your smoke alarms working? The Red Cross may be knocking at your door to make sure



MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- The numbers are staggering, every day 3,500 people are injured in a house fire -- 7 lives are lost, and a vast majority of those homes don't have working smoke detectors.

The Milwaukee Red Cross Chapter is helping kick off a new campaign to combat those numbers.

A smoke detector is a simple tool, that can be life-saving -- but you'd be surprised how many of your neighbors don't have a working one.

"We have elderly who maybe they can't test it. We have young single parents who it's all they can do to keep up," said Milwaukee Fire Chief, Mark Rohlfing.

But everyone needs one and it's the American Red Cross' goal to make that happen.

"Smoke detectors saves lives, they're the early warning system that allows people to first of all, recognize that they have a fire at a very, very early stage of the fire," said Rohlfing.

They also declared at Thursday morning's news conference they plan to reduce the fire deaths by 25% across the country. It's part of a new nationwide campaign.

"So we have a long 5 project ahead of us, we're very excited. We have 3 phases to our project," said Red Cross Regional Chapter Executive, Patty Flowers.

Sandra Mitchell has lived on Kaul Street for 20 years. She returned home this morning to a new door decoration from the Red Cross. This reminder tells the neighbors local officials will be back in the neighborhood, working to keep it free from fire deaths.

"I'm looking forward to it, I am," said Mitchell.

Because while she has some detectors, she would feel more comfortable if the professionals checked to make sure all of them were working properly.

"I'm not taking a chance, on my home nor my children or grandchildren," said Mitchell.

Our local Red Cross Chapter will be in the 53209 zip code between 35th and 40th Street -- as far north as Douglas, and as far south as Florist.

They will begin their sweep at 10 a.m., wrapping up around noon.

If you live in Milwaukee, the fire department will even come to your home, do a fire inspection and install alarms free of charge if you qualify.  The number is 414-286-8980.

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