NFPA announces theme for 2021 Fire Prevention Week


BACKGROUND: The Delta Fire burns in the Shasta-Trinity National Forest, Calif., on Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2018. Fire officials say the wildfire roaring through timber and brush in Northern California tripled in size overnight, prompting mandatory evacuations. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) announced “Learn the Sounds of Fire Safety” as the theme of this 2021’s Fire Prevention Week.

This year, Fire Prevention Week is recognized from October 3 through 9 and seeks to better educate the public about the sounds of smoke alarms, what they mean, and how to respond to them.

According to an NFPA report, working smoke alarms reduce the risk of dying in a fire by more than half. The same report, entitled “Smoke Alarms in the U.S.,” stated 41% of household fire deaths occur in homes with no smoke alarm or 16% in homes with alarms that failed to activate.

“Smoke alarms have played a leading role in reducing fire death rates over the past 40 years, but we still have more work to do in maximizing their effectiveness,” said Lorraine Carli, NFPA vice president of outreach and advocacy.

The key points of “Learn the Sounds of Fire Safety” include:

  • Respond immediately to smoke or carbon monoxide (CO) alarm sound by exiting the home
  • If your alarm begins to chirp, it may mean the batteries need to be replaced or the alarm replaced altogether
  • Test all smoke and CO alarms on a monthly basis
  • Install a bed shaker and strobe light alarms if someone in your household is deaf or hard or hearing
  • Know the difference between the sound of a smoke alarm and a CO alarm — three beeps for smoke, four beeps for CO

“Giving people the tools to properly respond to alarms sounding — whether it’s an actual fire or simply time to change a battery — can make a life-saving difference,” Carli concluded.

Fore more information about Fire Prevention week, visit

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