Thursday, January 31, 2013

Specialized Smoke Alarm to Benefit Hearing-Impaired Resident

Nice story I received from the City of Maricopa:


On January 11, members of the Maricopa Fire Department made a visit to a Maricopa home and installed a specialized smoke alarm for the hearing-impaired resident.

Mary Beth Del Pozzo was surprised when a Maricopa police officer arrived at her home and asked her if there was a fire in her home. Del Pozzo is hearing-impaired and did not know that her smoke alarms had been activated.

Del Pozzo is not alone. The U.S. Fire Administration reported that there are 11 million deaf or hearing-impaired Americans who are unable to rely on the life-saving warning sound of a residential smoke alarm to alert them of a fire.

When Fire crews arrived at Del Pozzo’s home, they recognized that she could benefit from a special smoke detector designed for the hearing impaired. They contacted the Arizona Burn Foundation, who happily donated the system. A week later, a Fire crew installed the unit. Now, a bright strobe light and a feature that shakes the mattress will alert her, day or night, when any smoke detector in the house is activated.

As the crew was leaving, Del Pozzo handed them a note saying “Thank you for your support and to you all for your help with my smoke alarm.”

Decreased hearing may limit a person's ability to take quick action and escape during a fire emergency. It is crucial that the hearing impaired and members of our community are aware of the availability of specialized smoke alarms, and that they have access to this technology.

If you know of anyone who could benefit from a smoke alarm for the hearing impaired, please contact the Fire Department, Division of Fire Prevention at
(520) 568-3333.

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