Smoke detectors save Peoria family


by Catherine Holland

Video report by Jill Galus

Posted on October 16, 2013 at 7:22 AM

Updated Tuesday, Oct 29 at 8:30 AM

Map: Jomax and Lake Pleasant Pkwy

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PEORIA, Ariz. – A Peoria family of five is alive this morning because they had a working smoke detector in their home.

A fire started in the garage of the home in the area of Jomax Road and Lake Pleasant Parkway at about 12:30 a.m. Wednesday. The family was sound asleep until their smoke detectors sounded. Those alarms gave them the time they needed to get out as the fast-moving flames spread into the attic, filling the house with smoke.

While all five members of the family escaped unharmed, everything inside the garage, including a vehicle, was destroyed.

Firefighters all over the country are adamant that fire detectors save lives, and that was certainly the case Wednesday. But it’s not enough just to have smoke detectors installed in your home. You have to check them regularly to ensure that they are working properly and replace the batteries before they die.

“Make it a habit – once a year, at least,” Peoria Fire Capt. Rob Brewster said.

Safety experts say you should test your smoke detectors every month and, if the alarms run on 9-volt batteries, replace the batteries at least once a year. The units themselves should be replaced every eight to 10 years.

Investigators are trying to determine what sparked the fire.