BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - On Wednesday, Beau Rivage employees volunteered with the American Red Cross to ensure fire safety in East Biloxi.
The newly formed team went door-to-door to install smoke alarms and check existing ones.
"I am very happy for it now I feel safe if a fire come out, I have something that I can depend on that can save my life, me and my husband," said Willie M. Alvert, a resident.
Volunteers were glad to deliver that feeling of relief to Biloxi residents. The group found several homes without smoke alarms and smoke alarms without batteries.
"I'm one of the ones who have taken the batteries out and plan to replace them later and never got around to it. This has opened my eyes to make sure I'm prepared as well, so it felt good to make sure that other people were prepared as well, especially elderly people," said Eula Moore, a Beau Rivage employee.
Each smoke detector was installed for free thanks to a nearly $13,000 grant from the Beau Rivage and the MGM Resorts Foundation to the Red Cross's Sound the Alarm campaign.
"For us, its more than just about the money. Its about taking the time to volunteer in the place where we live and work," said Mary Cracchiolo Spain, director of communications for the Beau Rivage.
With state officials reporting a spike in fire deaths this year, the Red Cross says efforts like this become even more important.
"It actually only takes about two minutes for an entire home to be enflamed. If we can actually give people even a couple extra seconds to know that there's a potential fire in their house and get out, that could save lives, or at least prevent injury," said Angie Grajeda with the Red Cross.
Those without a working smoke alarm can contact the Red Cross at (601) 582-8152 to have a team install one.