Eastbourne residents are being encouraged to check their smoke alarms as the clocks go back this weekend.
East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service is behind a campaign called Tick, Tock, Test which urges people to test their smoke alarms when they change their clocks.
Fire chief at the Whitley Road Community Fire Station Dave Sheppard said, “Smoke alarms save lives, but only if they work, With 197 people dying in fires in the home last year, and more than 70 per cent not being alerted to the fire by a smoke alarm, it is essential people test their smoke alarms regularly.
“A working smoke alarm can buy you and your family the valuable time you need to get out, stay out and call 999.
“You’re more than four times as likely to die in a fire if you don’t have a working alarm.
“Fire Kills campaign’s memorable phrase – Tick, Tock, Test – provides a wonderful reminder that will stay in people’s minds and hopefully prompt them into action when they go around their home changing their timepieces.”
As part of the Fire Kills campaign, East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service is determined to prevent as many deaths as possible and make sure people test their alarms when the clocks change in the early hours of Sunday October 26.
Mr Sheppard added, “Tick, Tock, Test is straight talking, easy to remember and intrinsically links clock change weekend to testing your smoke alarm.
“Everyone soon notices when a clock stops ticking, but it’s not so easy to be sure that your smoke alarm is still in working order.
“Whether the battery is flat, has been used for a kid’s toy or the connection is loose, everyone should take the time to test.
“And, as over half the people who died in home fires last year were 65 years old or above, this is also a perfect opportunity to test alarms for older relatives who might find it hard to reach their alarms but are at greater risk.
“By pushing the ‘test’ button on every smoke alarm, you could save the lives of your nearest and dearest – children, parents and friends alike.”