New Canaan Fire Marshal: Change Your Clocks, Change Your Batteries

As it seems that this interminable winter will never end, we look for signs that better (i.e., warmer) weather is approaching. One of those is the beginning of Daylight Savings Time which starts this weekend, officially at 2 a.m. on Sunday, March 10. (Remember “Spring ahead – Fall back.”)

In concert with the nationwide campaign “Change Your Clocks—Change Your Batteries,” the New Canaan Fire Department wants to remind everyone to change the batteries in your smoke detectors and CO alarms. 

“There is no greater tragedy than one that could have been prevented.” I can’t take credit for this statement, however, I could not agree more and the tragedy of home fires with the devastation they create is a perfect example. And when the prevention is as easy as installing and maintaining smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors, it becomes more ironic. 

Thanks to generous donations by New Canaan Fire Fighters, Local 3224, free batteries will be offered to New Canaan residents (three per household, please) at Fire Headquarters on Main Street from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, March 9. Residents who are unable to change their own batteries may call fire headquarters at 203-594-3140 to arrange for fire fighters to come to your residence for assistance.

New Canaan Fire Marshal Issues Carbon Monoxide Safety Tips

As the temperature drops top some of the coldest temps this season it is a good time to ensure that carbon monoxide or ‘CO’ detectors are installed and properly working. The New Canaan Fire Department has responded within the past two weeks and dealt with homes that contained elevated levels of CO. One was from a fire place damper that was closed too early after a fire. Another was from a malfunctioning heating system. In both cases the homeowners were unaware and were alerted by their CO detectors.

Fire Marshal: Lakeview Avenue Fire Resulted from Dehumidifier That Had Been Recalled

The recent fire on Lakeview Avenue was most likely the result of a malfunctioning dehumidifier that was subject to a recall.  Fortunately no one was hurt, however, the homeowner has had to relocate while cleanup crews scrub the sooty, black smoke that migrated throughout her home.  

The same night, a home in Ridgefield suffered an almost identical fire with a dehumidifier. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission actually first issued the Gree Dehumidifier recall back in 2013 and subsequently updated it in 2016. The recall covers many popular brands manufactured by Gree such as Kenmore, De’Longhi, Fedders, Frigidaire, GE, Gree, Seabreeze and, several others.  

To find out if your unit is covered under the recall, please see this page.

New Canaan Fire Marshal: ‘Change Your Clocks, Change Your Batteries’

“There is no greater tragedy than one that could have been prevented.” I cannot take credit for this statement—however, I could not agree more and the tragedy of home fires and the devastation they inflict is a perfect example. And when prevention is as easy as installing and maintaining smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors, it becomes more important. 

This year daylight savings time ends at 2 a.m. on Sunday, Nov. 4. (Remember “Spring ahead – Fall back.”) 

In concert with the nationwide campaign “Change Your Clocks – Change Your Batteries,” the New Canaan Fire Department and the New Canaan Fire Marshal’s Office also want to remind everyone to change the batteries in your smoke detectors. By being proactive this also helps avoid that annoying “chirp” that inevitably starts at 2 in the morning.

New Canaan Fire Marshal: Facts on Natural Gas

By now most are aware that Eversource is bringing natural gas to New Canaan, so I thought it was a good time to provide some basic information about “gas.” The following are some basic facts about natural gas:

Natural gas is a lighter than air gas, when released into the atmosphere it rises and dissipates. Propane is a heavier than air gas so it sinks when released. Both natural gas and propane have an odorant (ethyl mercaptan) added because in their natural states they are odorless, colorless and tasteless. That is the “rotten egg” odor we know as “gas.”
As with propane, natural gas may be used to feed multiple household appliances—for example, water heaters, stoves, pool heaters, fireplace logs, grills, furnaces, boilers and generators. 
Most propane equipment can be converted to use natural gas by licensed technicians.