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    Default NYC to hand out free batteries

    Since the other thread is getting pretty nasty...

    Hopefully the people that get the free batteries will truly need them and also do the right thing and put them in their smoke detectors (and not backwards!).

    From a CPSC/USFA Press Release today:

    News stories reported at least 200 people killed in home fires in first
    three weeks of February.


    One month, that only has 28 days.

    In wake of fatal fire, city to hand out free batteries

    BY HERBERT LOWE AND EMI ENDO
    herbert.lowe@newsday.com
    emi.endo@newsday.com

    March 9, 2007, 4:15 PM EST

    A day after nine people died in one of the city's worst house fires, Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced Friday that 150,000 free batteries for smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors would be distributed across the five boroughs over the next few days.

    Joined by Fire Commissioner Nicholas Scopetta, Bloomberg made the announcement shortly after meeting with relatives of the woman and eight children who perished in Wednesday's tragic blaze blocks from Yankee Stadium in the Bronx.

    The dead children, who include a pair of 7-month-old fraternal twins, ranged in age up to 11.

    The grief over the tragedy was so palpable that crowds arrived well before the regularly scheduled 1 p.m. prayer service at the Islamic Cultural Center in Morrisania, the site of Bloomberg's meeting.

    Soon after the service began, prayer rugs were laid outside because there was no room inside. About 20 worshippers took off their shoes and prayed outdoors, hearing the service only when the door was open.

    The Fire Department and the FDNY Foundation plan to distribute 1,000 free 9-volt batteries at Times Square on Saturday and to give out another 149,000 batteries over the next few days, officials said.

    The group already gave out 20,000 batteries at transit hubs around the city on Monday, the officials said. The city normally launches such a campaign to remind residents to check their smoke detector batteries at the same time they change their clocks, but this time the number of batteries distributed is increasing, they said.

    "The house in Highbridge had two alarms, but neither had batteries in them," Bloomberg said at a news conference. "It's impossible to say whether this would have saved lives, but smoke detectors really are the best defense that we have against fires and not using them is a risk that none of us can afford to take."

    Bloomberg arrived at the Islamic center at about 11:20 a.m. to meet with the relatives and religious leaders and left about a half-hour later. At the meeting were Moussa Magassa, the father of five of the eight children who died, and three of his remaining children; and Mamadou Soumare, who lost his wife and three of their four children.

    Dozens of community members also attended, Bloomberg said later at the news conference at Engine 68-Ladder 49, a firehouse a half mile from where the blaze occurred at 1022 Woodycrest Ave.

    "As the father of two daughters, I really can't imagine the pain and grief that their loved ones are going through," he said. "A parent should never have to bury their children. It's just not the logical order of things."

    Bloomberg also spoke about the families of the 150 other people who attended, most of whom, he said, immigrated to America to "pursue the great American dream -- and now find themselves sharing a great American tragedy with us.

    "Their hope and hard work define our city, and I think I speak for everybody, the fire has stunned everyone," he added. "It's particularly shaken this tight-knit community. I hope everyone says a prayer for them and for those who have suffered serious injuries."

    The blaze injured 13 other relatives, including some badly burned, and several firefighters, officials said.

    Bloomberg said that two of the injured were discharged from Jacobi Medical Center on Thursday night, and that two others remained in critical condition and two others were stable.

    The blaze started in a street-level bedroom about 11 p.m. Wednesday and took 150 firefighters two hours to bring under control, officials said. The dead children were killed by smoke inhalation, according to the city medical examiner's office.

    Magassa, who was in his native West African nation of Mali when the fire broke out, arrived back in New York early Friday and quickly went to a hospital to visit his wife and children who survived. He left to meet with the mayor and then joined the jam-packed prayer service.

    Soumare and Magassa took time to pray side by side inside the mosque, but Soumare left before the service started to head back to Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center to visit his daughter, Hassimi, 7. He arrived there about 1 p.m. with a police escort, staying until about 2:30 p.m., when he left wiping tears from his face, and without addressing the media.

    Funeral services for all nine victims will be held at 1 p.m. Monday at the Islamic Cultural Center, 371 E. 166th St. The bodies of Soumare's wife and children will be buried in Mali, while the Magassa children will laid to rest in New York, said Sheikh Moussa Drammeh, principal of the Islamic Cultural School, who is serving as a spokesman for both families.

    Bloomberg said the city would provide financial assistance to help the families with the funerals.

    Earlier Friday, before leaving for the mosque, Bloomberg again defended his decision, despite the overnight tragedy, not to cancel a previously scheduled trip Thursday to Miami.

    "I made sure we had all of the appropriate city agencies involved," he said on his weekly radio show.

    Bloomberg noted that he held a news conference about the fire Thursday morning and sent Schools Chancellor Joel Klein to the school where some of the children who died had attended.

    The mayor went to Miami to learn about that city's sustainability initiatives and later held two meetings to try to raise money for the World Trade Center Memorial Foundation, of which he is chairman.

    "You have to grieve but at the same time you have to focus on how could we have prevented this," Bloomberg said on the radio show. "Some people say you should stop everything. ... There are times you cancel, but I made sure everyone was doing what was right."

    Meanwhile, a spokeswoman for the city Department of Buildings, Kate Lundquist, said Friday that engineers and inspectors would be at the fire scene again Friday to document damage.

    Except for the Sept. 11 terror attack, Wednesday's blaze claimed the most lives since the 1990 Happy Land arson that killed 87 people, authorities said.

    The fire prompted waves of grief along the tight-knit Highbridge community. The two families were "getting a lot of comfort from the community," said Sidi Darrah, Mali ambassador to the United Nations.

    Donations for the surviving family members had already topped $21,000, Darrah said.

    Maria Cancel, 32, a mother of three, was among those who brought food to the home. She carried three black plastic bags full of sardines, macaroni and cheese, cereal and milk purchased at the corner bodega.

    "It's not a lot, but it's something," Cancel said. "I'd see the kids every day. At a time like this everybody has to get together."

    Robert Ortego, 10, joined a group of children at a makeshift memorial at a shuttered African grocery store just before classes started at Public School 73, as the votive candles reached the end of their wicks. Robert was a fifth-grade classmate of one of the children who died, Bandiogou Soumare, and called him "Bandi."

    "His mom told me they came from West Africa to get a better education," Robert said.

    Robert said he and Bandi would "chill out" and talk about movies. "I really saw him as a special kid. He had his own personality. While most kids would follow what others were doing, he would do his own thing."

    Staff writers Emi Endo, Daniel Massey, Deborah S. Morris and Jennifer Kelleher and freelancers Matthew Nestel and Matthew Chayes contributed to this story.

    Copyright 2007 Newsday Inc.
    "When I was young, my ambition was to be one of the people who made a difference in this world. My hope is to leave the world a little better for my having been there."
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    We do that all the time. Free batteries, free detectors. You can walk into any firehouse in the city and get a free smoke detectors. And there are still plenty of fires.
    I am a complacent liability to the fire service

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    Yup, cuz unless you go to the house and put them in yourself, you have no idea where they are really going. My bet....they will go anywhere except the smoke detector.

    Is this "plan" better than nothing....yes, but barely.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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    Exactly bones...my tax money going to pay for someone elses lack of personal responsibilty. My Smoke detectors have batteries and I paid for them.

    More paternalistic BS from the liberals who think its governments responsibilty to provide everything for everyone.

    Odds are all the TV remotes work just fine in the South Bronx today and no amount of prevention is going to change that type of behavior.

    FTM-PTB

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    Quote Originally Posted by FFFRED View Post
    Odds are all the TV remotes work just fine in the South Bronx today and no amount of prevention is going to change that type of behavior.

    FTM-PTB
    What TV remotes take 9 volt batteries these days? All the ones I've seen over the last decade take AA or AAA. In fact, other then smoke detectors, I don't know what takes a 9 volt. Maybe I'm just not that into "electronics" to notice.
    "When I was young, my ambition was to be one of the people who made a difference in this world. My hope is to leave the world a little better for my having been there."
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    I don't think FFFred's statement is about the type of battery in the remote, but the priorities (or lack thereof) of the people we are charged to protect. We did a door-to-door smoke detector program this year, and the number of residences without detectors (or detectors without batteries) was astounding.

    A few bucks for a battery or dectector versus the cost of replacing your house, or worse yet losing a life needlessly would seem like such a simple concept, but it's lost on some people. The sad fact is, there are people out there that just don't take fire safety to heart.

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    If they do make it the right way into the detectors, then about this time next year they'll go dead and no one will replace them. Its time to educate these people. Knock off burning prayer candles 24/7 unattended and one thin extension cord cant power the whole house. The number for 911 is 911, not your husbands gypsy cab cell phone.

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    Default Are you really that slow?

    Quote Originally Posted by DianeC View Post
    What TV remotes take 9 volt batteries these days? All the ones I've seen over the last decade take AA or AAA. In fact, other then smoke detectors, I don't know what takes a 9 volt. Maybe I'm just not that into "electronics" to notice.

    Listen, I spell it out for those who rode the short bus to school ....SOMETHING....ANYTHING that takes the 9 volt a kids toy, a small appliance, TV remote, mom's toy will get these batteries they are handing out and this is a reality that some on here are either not familiar with or refuse to acknowledge.

    No amount of fire prevention education will work in many places because the real problem is common sense and the basic education that some of these people never got in the sh*t hole schools they attended or at least until they dropped out. This is reality in the real world and not in Mayberry RFD.

    It doesn't have to be a remote. geeeeeez! Do we have to hold some peoples hands through everything?

    FTM-PTB

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    I sometimes find it amazing the lobbyists for the building industry couldn't keep hard wired smoke detectors out of the codes for new home construction. It was only a few years ago that the tragedy in West Warwick happened and because even in this day we can't REQUIRE that occupancies such as a dance club be sprinklered even during renovations. The building industry will go out of its way to skirt around the codes to save a few bucks, it's a sad reality. It wasn't the first time children needlessly died and it surely won't be the last. I bet someone was hearing about this tragedy and thinking what a shame this is, and then walk right by their own smoke detector that probably has a dead battery- if one at all.

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    Free batteries are nice. I bet most of them never make it into detectors. And most of the people can't even figure out how to change the batteries in thier CO detectors.
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    Who else remembers when smoke detectors were something new and there was a (brief, ineffective) campaign to require them to use a battery type that didn't fit anything else?

    Maybe it's time to consider that one again...
    "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"

    The Code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.

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    Quote Originally Posted by engineeremtp View Post
    ....even in this day we can't REQUIRE that occupancies such as a dance club be sprinklered even during renovations....
    Sez who?

    Codes are adopted state by state. Some have already adopted more strict sprinkler requirements for both new and existing assembly occupancies in direct response the Station fire and more are on the way.
    "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"

    The Code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DeputyMarshal View Post
    Sez who?

    Codes are adopted state by state. Some have already adopted more strict sprinkler requirements for both new and existing assembly occupancies in direct response the Station fire and more are on the way.
    Probably referring to the Feds. The Fire Sprinkler Incentive Act never made it to the House floor for a vote in the 109th or 110th Congress because it was too costly. TOO COSTLY!? The heck with the insurance payouts, doctors bills, rehab/therapy for life, lawsuits, funeral costs, etc. that add up to far more.

    I'm looking to purchase a condo right now -- my number one request? That it be sprinklered. My apartment is, so it only makes sense.

    By the way, check out these new self charging smoke alarms (I have no affiliation):

    http://www2.dupont.com/Fire_Safety/en_US/

    No batteries are required because it is running and self-charging off the electricity of your home. Installation is simple just screw it into a ceiling light socket.
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    Quote Originally Posted by DianeC View Post
    I'm looking to purchase a condo right now -- my number one request? That it be sprinklered.

    You are in Luck! I have some brand new Condos selling as we speak. Several Styles and Types, all located in downtown Glenn Dale, where every structure built since 1992 is Sprinklered.
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    This "plan" wasnt in response to the fatal fire, although the response has been greater since then. Just a few days earlier, free detectors were being handed out on the Grand Concourse. Free detectors and batteries have always been available, but like Fred said, they usually dont find their way onto walls or ceilings.
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    IMO if a few grand can save someone life then its worth it. Even if its just one and who knows maybe its a child life. Not everyone has fire protection on there mind like we all do. So if this may remind a few then its a good thing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by BFDNJFF View Post
    IMO if a few grand can save someone life then its worth it.
    So can I have a few grand of yours to put sprinklers in my house?
    I am a complacent liability to the fire service

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChicagoFF View Post
    So can I have a few grand of yours to put sprinklers in my house?

    your talking apples and oranges my friend.
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    Quote Originally Posted by BFDNJFF View Post
    your talking apples and oranges my friend.
    But is it? If I may go out on a limb ans assume where this is going.....

    lets say that our Chicago Brother here can afford his 9v batteries....and he is anal about changing them with his clocks every year. He unfortunately, as a underappreciated goverment employee, cannot afford life saving fire sprinklers. Should someone else pay the friegnt for his home to be outfitted with them?

    It is apples to oranges, but these apples are a little more red-orangeish.

    Its IMO a typical American Knee Jerk reactions to some tragedy thats usually politically motivated to make someones agenda look good. it will go by the wayside soon enough. In this case the program was there already but as I suspect in many places just not well received by unconcerned citizens. As I understand, it is now being pushed more after a tragedy.

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    Then I guess we should just shoot sparky the dog then shouldn't we ? Its all fire safety isn't it?
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    Quote Originally Posted by VinnieB View Post
    Free batteries are nice. I bet most of them never make it into detectors. And most of the people can't even figure out how to change the batteries in thier CO detectors.


    Been running a few too many CO runs lately vin??? I think we all have been!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by MG3610 View Post
    lets say that our Chicago Brother here can afford his 9v batteries....and he is anal about changing them with his clocks every year. He unfortunately, as a underappreciated goverment employee, cannot afford life saving fire sprinklers. Should someone else pay the friegnt for his home to be outfitted with them?

    It is apples to oranges, but these apples are a little more red-orangeish.

    Its IMO a typical American Knee Jerk reactions to some tragedy thats usually politically motivated to make someones agenda look good. it will go by the wayside soon enough. In this case the program was there already but as I suspect in many places just not well received by unconcerned citizens. As I understand, it is now being pushed more after a tragedy.
    Who can't afford sprinklers. We have to have them. I want a set for my house. Deluge... Hold on, how much will the Government pay. Ok, I want the one with a big OS&Y in the living room. And I want it mounted with the stem up. We'll call it the know it all chair. (ah..ah, no thanks, it's Only for guests, thank you)
    And I want some free batteries, and some of those Apples and Oranges.. and..

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    Quote Originally Posted by BFDNJFF View Post
    Then I guess we should just shoot sparky the dog then shouldn't we ? Its all fire safety isn't it?
    Don't read me wrong bro.....just looking at with a little cynicism. But seriously....at what point do we say we can only do so much....ya know?

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    Quote Originally Posted by MG3610 View Post
    Don't read me wrong bro.....just looking at with a little cynicism. But seriously....at what point do we say we can only do so much....ya know?
    I see what your saying and I understand there needs to be a point when we must stop because its to much but I see no wrong in this though and I think it works only to benefit the FD. What I am saying is yeah it may save a few lives but besides that its only good Public Relations for the FD's. Look at the all the coverage this got in the news. I would rather hear about FD's giving out batteries then some negative press.
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    Angry "You gotta get in for the fun to begin" ??????

    Quote Originally Posted by MG3610 View Post
    Don't read me wrong bro.....just looking at with a little cynicism. But seriously....at what point do we say we can only do so much....ya know?
    __________________
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    Hey ..."BRO"
    Your kidding, of course. Is the fun in pulling ceiling until you ache, or just crawling around in a Project and finding dead baby's on a mattress on the floor. No insult intended, but after the heroic crap wears off most Firemen take the job seriously. After you see people turn into crispy C's while you look at their faces and try to cut through the bars they use to protect themselves from the neighbors a few times it makes you hard, but it's not ever fun.

    Most of the people who think it's fun are perverted Fire Fan's, who may even hang around your Firehouse, and if you pay attention when the rig pulls up, you'll see them through the crowd, sitting on a hydrant with a book of matches in one hand and something else in the other.
    Last edited by Rockie; 03-13-2007 at 11:30 PM.

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