The Springfield Fire Department is calling attention to the importance of smoke detectors after a department installed alarm helped save the lives of two women from a weekend fire.
SFD officials say a woman and her elderly mother were able to escape a fire Sunday in a Mark Twain neighborhood home. The alarm was credited with giving the pair the time they needed to be able to safely flee the home.
The alarm had been installed as part of Project Red Zone, an outreach of the fire department where firefighters visit neighborhoods of high fire rates and install fire alarms in homes that do not have them. They also replace batteries inside fire alarms within homes and test them to make sure they are in proper operation.
“Now approaching year 3 of Project RED Zone, we are starting the see the positive effects of these canvases, and our efforts to make Springfield a fire safe community,” Fire Chief David Pennington said earlier this year. “We have responded to several house fires now in which the occupants of the home have safely escaped because of a working smoke alarm that we installed for them.”
The project has been put on hold because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Prior to the pandemic caused freeze in the program, the department has visited almost 25,000 homes in the following neighborhoods: Rountree, Delaware, West Central, Grant Beach, Westside, Heart of the Westside, Robberson, Woodland Heights, Tom Watkins, Doling, Midtown, Bissett, Weller, and Oak Grove.
Project RED Zone is funded by the American Red Cross, Safe Kids Springfield, FEMA, and the Springfield Fire Department’s community risk reduction funds.