Archive for November, 2012

Time Change Triggers Kentuckians to ‘Change the Batteries’

Saturday, November 3rd, 2012

Frankfort, Ky. (Nov. 2, 2012) – Kentuckians “fall back” this weekend to standard time, and the Division of Fire Prevention says it’s the perfect event to also change the batteries in smoke detectors to ensure they are working.

“Each year we send an important message – make it a habit to check the batteries in your smoke detectors when you change the time on your clocks,” said State Fire Marshal William Swope. “The first line of defense for escaping a fire is early warning. If your home doesn’t have smoke detectors, you should install them. Install one on every floor of your home, including the basement and in each sleeping area,” Swope said.

            Without a working smoke detector to issue an early warning, fire can quickly spread throughout a home, blocking escape routes and filling rooms with deadly smoke, Swope said.

In fact, almost two-thirds of home fire deaths in 2005-2009 resulted from fires in homes with no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms, according to the National Fire Protection Association.

            “The bottom line is that smoke alarms save lives; they should be in every home,” Swope said.

The Kentucky State Fire Marshal’s office encourages Kentuckians to keep in mind the following safety tips: 

*Install smoke alarms in every bedroom, outside each separate sleeping area and on every level of the home, including the basement. Interconnect all smoke alarms throughout the home. When one sounds, they all sound.

*Test alarms at least monthly by pushing the test button.

*Smoke rises. Install smoke alarms, following manufacturer’s instructions, high on a wall or on a ceiling. Save manufacturer’s instructions for testing and maintenance.

*Replace batteries in all smoke alarms at least once a year. If an alarm “chirps,” warning the battery is low, replace the battery right away.

*Replace all smoke alarms, including alarms that use 10-year batteries and hard-wired alarms, when they are 10-years-old or sooner if they do not respond properly.

*Be sure the smoke alarm has the label of a recognized testing laboratory.

*Alarms that are hard-wired (and include battery backup) must be installed by a qualified electrician.

*If cooking fumes or steam sets off nuisance alarms, replace the alarm with an alarm that has an alarm silencing button. An alarm silencing button will reduce the alarm’s sensitivity for a short period of time.

*Smoke alarms that include a recordable voice announcement in addition to the usual alarm sound, may be helpful in waking children through the use of a familiar voice.

*Smoke alarms are available for people who are deaf or hard of hearing. These devices use strobe lights. Vibration devices can be added to these alarms.

*Smoke alarms are an important part of a home escape plan.

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KSP – Operation R.A.I.D.

Saturday, November 3rd, 2012

- Kentucky State Police kicks off a six-month fall, holiday, and New Year enforcement campaign called Operation R.A.I.D. (Remove Aggressive, Impaired and Distracted drivers from Kentucky Roadways).  The effort was developed by KSP Commanders across the state to target driving behaviors that cause most crashes in Kentucky.  Operation R.A.I.D. begins Nov. 1, 2012 and runs through April 30, 2013.

KSP Director of Operations, Lieutenant Colonel Jack Miniard says the unique aspect about Operation R.A.I.D. is that although it will have the same objectives, each post will have a different operational plan based on crash activity in that region.

“Many times, law enforcement will participate in a blanket campaign that may or may not work well in certain areas,” says Miniard.  “Operation R.A.I.D. allows each post to identify targeted areas based on real time crash data and mapping systems for more effective results.”

Miniard says the campaign will have both an enforcement and educational component to assist in getting the message out to motorists.  “We will have more visible enforcement in crash corridors, more roving patrols, and an increase in safety checkpoints across the state,” adds Miniard.  “Posts will utilize best practices for which they have had the most success and combine current crash data to identify targeted enforcement zones.”

“Each post will be challenged to utilize their Public Affairs Officer’s as an outreach tool to the community,” says Miniard.  “Through media and education we can get our message out while providing the public with safe driving resources.”

Miniard says the campaign focus is on reducing the loss of life on Kentucky highways. “This program is not about writing tickets, it is about enforcing traffic laws and bringing awareness to dangerous driving behaviors that cause crashes,” adds Miniard.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines aggressive driving as occurring when “an individual commits a combination of moving traffic offenses so as to endanger other persons or property.”  NHTSA studies show that aggressive drivers cause two-thirds of all fatal crashes and 35 percent of all crashes.

For more information about Operation R.A.I.D. in your area, please contact your local post or call the KSP Public Affairs Branch at (502) 782-1780.

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