Red Cross launches fire prevention initiative

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

The American Red Cross is launching a five-year home fire preparedness campaign, targeting low-income, high-risk areas thought southwest Missouri.

According to Red Cross spokeswoman Julie Stotling, the campaign aims to reduce injuries, save lives and build more resilient communities.

"We plan to join with local fire departments in identifying at-risk neighborhoods and go door-to-door installing fire alarms," Stotling said. "Our goal is to reduce home fire deaths and injuries by 25 percent over the next five years."

According to Red Cross statistics, home fires are responsible for seven deaths each day, with fire-related injuries occurring every 40 minutes across the nation.

"This campaign is geared toward raising awareness," Stotling said. "The other day, we installed a CO2 detector in a home and it immediately went off. They had a CO2 leak. That's a life that was saved."

CO2 is carbon dioxide, a colorless, odorless, gas and can cause damage to the heart, respiratory and central nervous systems or death.

The program will also engage youth in area classrooms with technology, challenges and science education.

For more information, people may call Terra Jeffres at 417-380-1148.

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