FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Since April 2017, Springfield firefighters have installed 1,795 smoke alarms in area neighborhoods as a part of Project RED Zone.
They’ve visited nearly 12,000 homes in the West Central, Grant Beach, Westside, Heart of the Westside, Robberson and Woodland Heights neighborhoods. The department is moving into the Tom Watkins neighborhood (bordered by West Bypass to the west, Kansas Expressway to the east, Division Street to the south and I-44 to the north) starting Saturday, Oct. 13, in an effort to ensure that every Springfield resident has adequate warning of a fire in their home.
In addition to the 1,795 installed alarms, firefighters have tested an additional 3,364 alarms and replaced 517 batteries in existing alarms as a part of Project RED Zone.
This brings the total number of alarms installed in our community during canvasses and other requests to over 3,300 in the last 12 months – far surpassing totals in recent years.
Project RED Zone – a reference to the red areas on the Springfield Fire Department’s map of fire incidents – stands for Reduce, Educate, Deliver. It is part of SFD’s Community Risk Reduction (CRR) program. The multifaceted campaign aims to ensure all homes in high-risk areas of the city have working smoke alarms.
The program is already a proven success, with at least two lives saved as a result of smoke alarms installed during Project RED Zone. In September 2017, the occupant of a West Central apartment was notified to a fire in a neighboring apartment by her smoke alarm that had been installed two months before by Springfield fire crews. In November of last year, the occupant of another West Central apartment was notified to a fire in a unit below her when her smoke alarm sounded. That alarm had also been installed by Springfield fire crews the previous January.
Working smoke alarms double your chances of surviving a fire. Smoke alarms should be installed on every level of the home, in each bedroom and outside each sleeping area.
Project RED Zone is funded with the help of donations from the American Red Cross of Southern Missouri, Safe Kids Springfield, FEMA Fire Prevention and Safety grants and general revenue SFD funds designated for public education.
The Fire Department offers free smoke alarms and batteries to anyone in need.
To obtain a free alarm, call 417-874-2300.
For more information, please contact Division Fire Chief Kevin Trogdon at 417-874-2340.