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Salisbury church partnering with state fire marshal’s office for smoke alarm training

First Baptist Church Salisbury has partnered with the North Carolina Baptist Aging Ministry and the Office of State Fire Marshal to bring a needed fire prevention program to area residents.

The event will be held today at the church, 223 North Fulton St., from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Those who attend will receive free 10-year lithium battery smoke alarms to install in the homes of those who need them.

Preference for the alarms will be given to those who pre-registered for the training session. Staff members from the state fire marshal’s office will conduct the training, which will include smoke alarm education, safety messaging, guidelines for installation and other information on the types of alarms being used, according to a release.

The partner agencies are working on an ongoing initiative where their first priority is prevention, the release said.

The hope is to reduce accidental death and injury rates for adults 65 and older in North Carolina. Officials say the aging are twice as likely to be killed or injured by fires or falls, compared to the general population. The groups share a passionate goal to reduce the statistic.

The grant-funded alarms provided at the training are state-of-the-art lithium battery-powered devices with a 10-year battery life. Installers will be required to obtain a signed waiver from each recipient and also complete an installation report for each home they service.  When these two forms are returned to North Carolina Baptist Aging Ministry, installers will be eligible to receive additional alarms.

North Carolina Baptist Aging Ministry serves aging adults 65 and over, which is a demographic at highest risk of being injured or dying in a house fire.

In 2013, officials said 23 of 65 fire fatalities in North Carolina were aging adults. There is a solid partnership between North Carolina Baptist Aging Ministry and the state fire marshal’s office.

“We value our partnership with the Office of State Fire Marshal. The needs are great and we accomplish more working together,” said Dr. Sandy Gregory, director of the North Carolina Baptist Aging Ministry.

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