It’s a parent’s nightmare: the house is on fire and they can’t reach their children. Worse, even if the smoke alarm is going off experts say your children may not hear it, so they may not save themselves.
Having a working, reliable smoke alarm has proven time and again to save lives from house fires. However, smoke alarms are only one piece of the safety puzzle. Forensic scientists and fire investigators are warning parents that smoke alarms may not wake children.
According to research, the frequency of the alarms may be too high-pitched for young children to hear, especially for male children. Children are biologically different. They sleep differently than adults and they remain in a deep sleep longer than adults. Because of this, a smoke alarm may not be enough to rouse them from sleep.
The fire brigade, as well as smoke alarm providers, recommend that families have a solid fire escape plan in place. Parents are encouraged to practise the plan with the children but remember it’s a lot different to practise in a controlled situation than it will be going through an uncontrolled fire.
As parents are developing the family’s fire escape plan, experts recommend they also plan for how they will help children who are not awakened by the alarm. By having a tested plan in place that has been practised, parent’s will be able to quickly assess the situation and assist the children. In the case of fire, seconds can make a life-saving difference. Read more