Check smoke, carbon detector batteries as you move clocks ahead

The Scottsbluff Fire Department is reminding residents when they set their clock forward one hour this weekend for the beginning of Daylight Savings Time they should also check the batteries in their smoke and carbon detectors. If your smoke detector is 10 years old, it needs to be replaced. Carbon monoxide detectors generally need to be replaced every 5-7 years.

Batteries in detectors need to be changed at least twice a year, even if they are hardwired into the home's electrical system. The Scottsbluff Fire Department recommends doing this when daylight savings begins and ends as an easy reminder.

Roughly two-thirds of home fire deaths occurred in homes without working smoke detectors. Since most fatal fires occur at night, it is essential that every home have working smoke detectors to provide an early warning. Working smoke detectors increase the chance of surviving a home fire by 50%.

If any residents do not currently have a working smoke or carbon monoxide detector, the Fire Department will provide them for free and install them in the home. Residents can contact the Fire Department by calling 630-6231 to request a detector, or can visit the fire Department link on the city's webstie and click on the "Detector Program" link.

The government expanded daylight-saving time in 2007 in an effort to save energy. It now begins on the second Sunday in March and continues until the first Sunday in November.

The official change occurs at 2 a.m. Sunday, local time, although people often change their clocks before going to bed Saturday night.

Daylight-saving time ends Nov. 3.

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