FOND DU LAC - Wisconsin state law requires smoke alarms be installed and in working condition in every single-family or multi-family home and apartments.
Now one area fire department is among those trying to make that happen.
Smoke alarms are a simple, life-saving tool.
"Smoke alarms save lives and that is really the bottom line, smoke alarms save lives," said Fond du Lac Fire Department Assistant Chief Steve Beer.
Following the fatal fire in Oshkosh Wednesday night, investigators discovered there were no working smoke alarms in the duplex.
Now the Fond du Lac Fire Department is hoping to help prevent tragedies like that from happening again by taking the message of fire safety door-to-door.
"We're going in to make things corrective and not punitive. We want to keep people safe and that's the whole motivation behind this," said Fond du Lac Fire Department Fire Chief Peter O'Leary.
Following a fire in a neighborhood, Fond du Lac firefighters will take these door hangers to homes in a 1-2 block radius around the fire. Firefighters will provide residents with safety tips as well as check and if necessary, replace smoke detectors free of charge. They will also offer to schedule a free home safety inspection for any homeowners in the city.
"It's really, really critical that residents give us a chance to come and make sure their homes are fire safe," O'Leary said.
Beer says it's a program that works. He says similar programs elsewhere have shown a 60 percent reduction in accidental fires.
"It's designed to take advantage of the heightened awareness after tragedy strikes in a neighborhood."
Increasing prevention one door at a time.
To schedule a free home safety inspection in Fond du Lac, call the fire department at (920) 322-3800.
Also check your local fire department. Many install smoke alarms in homes at no cost.
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