Craig Morgan, country music star and former emergency medical technician, today introduced a national awareness campaign in partnership with Kidde Fire Safety and the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation to remind families to ‘Be a Safety Hero’ by following five simple home fire safety steps. Each year, approximately 3,000 people die in home fires in the U.S., with most fires happening during the winter. Kidde, a leading manufacturer of residential fire safety products, is a part of UTC Building & Industrial Systems, a unit of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX).
“As a former first responder, I’ve seen the damage home fires can cause. Many home fire deaths are preventable, and I want to do what I can to help keep families safe,” said Morgan. In 2011, the country music star put his EMT training to use and rescued two children from a burning house in his home state.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, two-thirds of home fire deaths occur in homes with either no smoke alarm or no working alarm. Kidde’s ‘Be a Safety Hero’ program aims to improve safety through the following five steps:
1. Replace smoke alarms older than 10 years old with units featuring a 10-year sealed-in battery. Kidde’s Worry-Free line provides a decade of continuous protection with no low-battery chirps.
2. Place fire extinguishers on every level of your home and make sure they are within reach.
3. Install carbon monoxide alarms on each floor and near bedrooms.
4. Develop and practice an escape plan with your family. Know two ways out of each room.
5. Show your commitment by taking and sharing the pledge at alarmpledge.com; you’ll help your family and help reduce the risk firefighters face when responding to a home fire.
To help families get started, Kidde will donate 1,000 of its new Worry-Free 10-year sealed battery smoke alarms to fire departments at 10 stops during Morgan’s 2014 tour–a $25,000 retail value. Kidde will donate another 500 Worry-Free smoke alarms to the Tennessee State Fire Marshal’s Office smoke alarm distribution program. In this year alone, the fire marshal’s office has distributed more than 30,000 smoke alarms to fire departments across Tennessee and saved 38 lives.
“Kidde’s mission is to help save lives, and we are pleased to work with Craig, the Foundation and all of the partners on this campaign,” said Chris Rovenstine, vice-president, sales and marketing, Kidde. “Dead or missing batteries are the main reasons smoke alarms don’t sound in a fire. By providing sealed-battery smoke alarms to local fire departments, we can help protect families who otherwise may not have the means to replace an outdated alarm.”
CMA’s 2013 National Broadcast Personality of the Year and country music superstar, Kix Brooks, joined Morgan and Kidde representatives as a special guest at the event. Brooks serves as the radio voice for public service announcements on the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation’s alarm pledge program. The pledge asks families to commit to being fire safe, which in turn helps firefighters who respond to a home fire.
“Firefighters put their lives on the line every time they answer a call, and the risk increases if they have to enter a burning home to rescue those inside,” said Ron Siarnicki, executive director of the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation. “By pledging to take these steps, you not only can be a hero, you also can help save a hero.”
Safety vignettes featuring Morgan and Nashville firefighters will air during the live-televised program on ABC.