Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service (HWFRS) is raising awareness about the importance of smoke alarms.

In partnership with the Fire Kills campaign, HWFRS is urging residents to not only install smoke alarms but to regularly test and update them as needed, ensuring the safety of their loved ones.

Smoke alarms can provide critical extra seconds for individuals to escape in the event of a fire. While many homes are now equipped with these life-saving devices, most people are unaware that smoke alarms have an average lifespan of just ten years before requiring replacement.

Emma Roberts, HWFRS Head of Prevention, emphasises the importance of maintaining and updating smoke alarms. She states, "Smoke alarms can offer vital protection for you and your loved ones, but most people simply fit and forget – they don’t know if it might be coming to the end of its lifespan or not working at all."

HWFRS encourages residents to make fire safety a top priority by installing smoke alarms on every level of their homes and testing them weekly. By doing so, families can ensure their safety and security, which should be of utmost importance to everyone.

To help maintain working smoke alarms, HWFRS offers the following tips:

  • Install at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home

  • Test your smoke alarms by pushing the button every week

  • Check that your smoke alarms are less than ten years old

  • Change the batteries every year, and never remove them

  • Consider ten-year sealed battery smoke alarms as they save on battery replacement costs

  • Place smoke alarms in appropriate locations, such as ceilings in the middle of rooms, landings, hallways, and near bedrooms

  • Avoid placing alarms in or near kitchens or bathrooms, where smoke or steam may cause false alarms

For those who need assistance installing smoke alarms or have loved ones who may require help, contact HWFRS for support. To determine eligibility for a free Home Fire Safety visit, call the HWFRS Prevention team at 0800 032 1155 or complete a free online Home Fire Safety check at