NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - Sunday, November 6 ends Daylight Savings Time, that means you will need to move your clocks back an hour.
The American Red Cross says it's also the right time to test the batteries in your smoke detectors. The organization recommends all Southeast Louisiana residents have working smoke alarms on every level of their home, including inside and outside bedrooms.
"Thirteen people have died in home fire-related deaths in Louisiana in the past two months," says Joshua Joachim, regional chief executive for the Louisiana Red Cross. "As temperatures begin to drop, we traditionally see an uptick in home fires around the holidays. Smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in a home fire in half, and turn and test is a quick practice to make sure yours are all in working order."
The American Red Cross says seasonal items like candles, Christmas trees, radiators, floor heaters and fireplaces all contribute to an increased risk of a home fire.
Over the past month, Red Cross volunteers partnered with the New Orleans Fire Department and the Jefferson Parish Fire Department and visited about 300 households in Kenner and Uptown New Orleans. 76 smoke detectors were installed during those visits.
"In addition to working smoke alarms, it is also important that families create and practice a fire escape plan," Joachim said. "Make sure everyone in the family knows how to get out of every room and how to get out of the home in less than two minutes."
The American Red Cross says in the next couple of weeks volunteers will teach home fire safety to students at Schaumburg Elementary in New Orleans and at a Kenner Montessori school.