May 22, 2011 12:13 AM by Chris Welty
Acadiana homes are a bit more safe after Saturday's Operation Save a Life event.
Dozens of fire fighters partnered up with the Louisiana State Fire Marshall's Office, Home Depot, and KATC. The event was all about the number one fire alert system, smoke detectors.
"We could have still been in there. We could have died from smoke inhalation" said Zelma Charles. Almost one week ago, Charles' house went up in flames. The fire started underneath their hot water heater.
"We smelled the smoke and of course, my son was ignoring it and I asked if he was smelling anything or cooking."
Moments after, Charles' smoke detector started going off, a signal that she took seriously, saving her family's life. "We were so grateful for it, we had an electrician come in and install some electronic devices instead of the battery operated ones because we were that satisfied that it helped us save our lives."
You can get a smoke detector made specifically for any room in your house, including the kitchen, but it doesn't do any good if it is not installed properly and the batteries are dead. "It's really your first line of defense. It's going to let you know when that fire is coming or smoke, or the possibility of something going on in the house and you need to get out" said officials with the State Fire Marshall's Office.
Saturday, Operation Save a Life gave families a place to learn all about fire safety, and people could buy new fire alarms or apply to get one for free. According to the Louisiana Fire Marshalls Office, last year 48 people died in fires, and 40 of them didn't have working smoke detectors in their homes. Marshalls urge everyone to take the time and install a smoke detector to protect the ones you love and possibly to save a life.