The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has launched its first major campaign of 2005, according to an association press release.
The latest program focuses on the protection of high risk groups such as older adults and children from fire by promising 21,000 free smoke alarms with 10 year batteries and fire safety education programs to the key high risk regions of Alabama, Mississippi, and the Navajo Nation.
The goal of the program, according to NFPA President James M. Shannon, is to "reduce the number of fire injuries and deaths in high-fire-risk communities in areas that our researchers have identified as top outreach priorities." The effort will be funded in part by the NFPA and also through funds from the 2003 Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program of the U.S. Fire Administration.
According to Margie Coloian of the NFPA Public Affairs Department, the individuals, senior centers, and schools targeted by the campaign will not need to enroll into a program in order to receive the free assistance.
"We are working with fire departments in the high risk areas we have targeted for this campaign to identify the individuals and organizations we need to work with, where they are located, and then assist them accordingly," Coloian said.
Both the installation of the smoke alarms in homes and the fire safety education programs in senior centers, schools, and homes will all be free of charge.
According to NFPA's national 2004 report, Preschool age children and older adults have a home fire death rate that is roughly twice the national average. For adults ages 75 and over, the risk is three times greater; for those age 85 and over, the risk grows to four-and-a-half times the national average.
For a copy of the press release and for information on how to contact the NFPA please go to the following link: NFPA smoke alarm installation program helps those at high risk of home fires