BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Since October is Fire Prevention Month, firefighters from Biloxi's nine fire stations will be making their way around the city over the next few weekends, visiting residents' homes to raise awareness about fire safety.
"Our firefighters, assisted by representatives of the Red Cross and Red Cross volunteers, will go into neighborhoods this weekend and two other weekends this month to offer free fire safety tips to homeowners," said Biloxi Fire Chief Joe Boney. "We'll also be checking smoke detectors and have free smoke detectors for those older homes that need them."
Firehouse Subs and fire department grants paid for the 400 self-contained smoke detectors that will be installed in residents' homes. Each detector is powered by a lithium battery that should last 10 years.
This year's effort, "Turn Your Attention to Fire Prevention," is a joint project of the Biloxi Fire Department, American Red Cross, and Firehouse Subs. The program is patterned after a successful initiative by Tuscaloosa, AL Fire Chief A.J. Martin.
"This is not just about smoke detectors," said Fire Chief Boney. "This is about fire safety. In September, we had our first fire fatality in four years in Biloxi, and we're looking to take every step that we can to avoid that situation from happening again."
As many as three dozen firefighters, as well as Red Cross workers and volunteers, will visit neighborhoods all over Biloxi on Oct. 17, Oct. 24, and Oct. 31.
Any Biloxi resident who is interested in having a home visit or needs a free smoke detector installed can call the fire chief's office at (228) 435-6200, call the American Red Cross at (228) 896-4511, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.