New Smoke Detector Law On The Way In AprilPosted: Updated:
If you're planning on selling or renting your home you're going to have to buy new smoke detectors. It's the result of a new state law which takes effect this April.
Right now in New York State you can buy a fire alarm that lasts for ten years, or one that uses replaceable batteries, but on April 1 that will change.
"Any smoke detector that is sold is to be a ten year battery life that's a sealed unit," said Matthew Carpenter, Black River fire chief.
Carpenter said that people can still use older smoke detectors in their own homes. But those detectors only have a life expectancy of 10 years even though the batteries are replaceable. If someone is planning to sell or rent their property they need to replace old smoke alarms with new 10 year alarms.
"This will actually save people because the battery will be there for the full ten years," he said.
At the Watertown City Fire Department, Chief Dale Herman said the new law has advantages.
"It's less likely that a person can disable a smoke detector even if they were to remove the smoke detector from the wall or the ceiling the smoke detector is still active," Herman said.
For the past four years the American Red cross has been helping install fire alarms inside people's homes. The Red Cross uses alarms which comply with the new law.
The program is free. and even with the new law a representative of the group says they have enough smoke alarms for everyone.
"We will be able to take care of anyone that calls us," said Jane Gendron, from the regional Red Cross chapter.
If you want a volunteer from the Red Cross to replace your alarms, the phone number is 315-782-4410.