Cleveland Fire Brigade is reaching out to deaf and hard of hearing communities this Deaf Awareness Week (7th – 13th May) to ensure they have effective smoke alarms.
An estimated one million adults in the UK are unable to hear an ordinary smoke alarm because of hearing difficulties or removal of a hearing aid at night. As part of the UK Council on Deafness’ Deaf Awareness Week, the Brigade is reminding its residents of the importance of fitting and testing appropriate smoke alarms to alert them to a fire in their home.
Les Jones, Head of Community Safety said, “It is vital that people who are deaf or hard of hearing ensure they have the right smoke alarm technology in their home to protect them, and that they test them weekly to make sure they work.
“Many people with hearing loss could be at serious risk if they don’t have the right alarm in place. A specialist alarm system provides valuable time to escape from a house blaze, and without it lives could be lost.”
The British Standard BS5446-3:2005 specifies smoke alarm kits for deaf and hard of hearing people. Products made to this standard give deaf people the assurance of quality smoke alarms designed to meet their needs.
The Cleveland Fire Support Network volunteers work alongside the Brigade supporting the work they do. They visit homes across the area to discuss the needs of individuals and where needed, they will professionally fit the correct specialist type of smoke alarm. Hartlepool, Stockton, Redcar and Cleveland and Middlesbrough Social Services, along with private landlords and housing associations provide the alarm depending on the resident’s circumstances.
Anyone in doubt about the alarm they need should contact us on Text Phone for a free Home Fire Safety Visit on 01429 874125. We are here to help make sure your home is as fire safe as possible and we have staff who can sign in British Sign Language if needed.
The emergency number to send a text message to is 07718 999999 and standard text message rates will apply.