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Brewton fire chief shares fire safety tips

Alabama is among the top five states with the highest fatality rates for burn or fire-related deaths in the US, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). CDC said that the national fatality rate for fires is 0.5. Alabama’s rate is 1.1. This month is National Safety Month. Burns are the fifth leading cause of unintentional injury deaths in homes and communities.

“We work hard on the campaign that smoke alarms save lives,” Brewton Fire Chief Jeffrey Salter said. “People die in fires because they don’t have smoke alarms in their house. That’s the main thing we try to hit on.”

In 2018, Gov. Kay Ivey started a program that distributes and installs smoke detectors across Alabama. Salter said that if you call the Brewton Fire Department, they will come over and install a smoke alarm for you for free. They will even come to put new batteries in for you.

“Everybody needs a working smoke alarm in their house,” Salter said. “Since we have been doing the program here, we have saved three lives that we know of just from installing smoke alarms.”

Salter said the first call the Brewton Police Department received when the home on 316 North Pine Street caught fire last Wednesday was sent from the fire alarm dispatch in the home. Salter also advises that you never run back into a burning building because that is how a lot of people hurt themselves.

“If your house ever catches on fire, I want you to get out and stay out,” Salter said. “A lot of people try to go back in to get valuables, but all of that stuff can be replaced.”