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Perfect time to test your detectors

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By Wainwright Jeffers - bio | email

September 21, 2008

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Fire safety is important all year long.

As the season starts to change, this is the perfect time to test the smoke detector in your home.

It takes only seconds to test, precious seconds if there's ever a fire in your home.

"I don't check it as regularly as I should," said Ndi Akpan, Lee County resident.

When we asked Ndi Akpan she admitted her smoke detector is not routinely checked.

"When I hear something on the news about fire, or somebody that's been injured because of a fire I check it, which thankfully is more than once a year," said Akpan.

The Albany Fire Department says smoke detectors should be checked at least once a month.

"People don't understand when you go to sleep your senses decrease, so your sense of smell is going to decrease. The smoke is not going to wake you when there's a fire. That's why it's important to have smoke detectors and let them do their job," said Cpt. Marty Leverett, Albany Fire Department.

AFD recommends always uing good quality batteries, generally the more expensive ones. 

"My old apartment I use to have a smoke detector, and it beeped regularly, and you bet accustomed to hearing the noise," Akpan.

If it beeps it's not a good sign.

"Usually when the beep it's telling you is that you need to change your batteries. If you have one that's beeping go ahead and change the batteries, and see if that doesn't correct the problem," said Leverett.

Experts say right now is the time to get up, take a few seconds, and test your smoke detector.

"I'll make a point to check it more often, and keep the batteries in it changed regularly," said Akpan.

"I think it's just as important as having the electricity turned on, I wouldn't sleep in a house unless they had a smoke detector in it. I wouldn't recommend anyone sleeping in a house that doesn't have one," said Leverett.

When they're functioning correctly smoke should alert you to get out before it's too late.

The fire department says it's also good to have a carbon monoxide detector, especially for those who use natural gas appliances, or generators in and around their homes.

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