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Hagerstown Fire Dept. teams with Lowe's for fire safety

Free checking, replacement, and installation of smoke detectors coming to a neighborhood near you

Free checking, replacement, and installation of smoke detectors coming to a neighborhood near you

May 16, 2008|By MARLO BARNHART

Hagerstown Fire Department on-duty personnel, volunteers from the Antietam Fire Company and six Lowe's employees went through several South End neighborhoods Wednesday night, checking and, in some cases, replacing smoke detectors in several homes.

"We were on Guilford, Summit and Surrey avenues Wednesday night," said Michael Weller, fire department educator.

Since May 1, more than 600 homes have been surveyed, and 325 extended-life smoke alarms, which last 10 years, were installed, Weller said.

"It's been a very successful endeavor," Weller said of the annual project, which targets different areas of Hagerstown each year.

Lowe's staff members are riding with firefighters as they perform this year's neighborhood safety canvass.

Weller said most residents are happy to see them come since there is no cost to them to either check, replace or install the smoke detectors.

"We installed 115 alarms in just one night last week," Weller said Thursday.

When necessary, the on-duty fire department personnel respond to emergency calls from where they are conducting the surveys, Weller said.

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Funded through a state grant, Smoke Alarms For Everyone (SAFE) provides $21,000 per year for the surveys.

"We are fully funded for three more years," Weller said.

The Lowe's Heroes effort is a national initiative through which Lowe's employees team with local partners to perform community service work related to life safety.

"Each of the two Lowe's stores contributed $1,500," Weller said.

The fire department program began in 1999 and has been conducted every year since, Weller said.

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