What frustrates Miller is that, to his mind, too many of these fires are more serious than they should be. Too many homes lack smoke detectors. That means the fires aren’t discovered as quickly, causing greater damage and putting lives at risk.
It shouldn’t be that way.
“With the program we have, there’s no reason not to have them,” Miller said. “Not having alarms is not an issue.”
The Ottumwa Fire Department has the smoke detectors to install in homes. They’re free, thanks to grants from a number of different groups, including the Legacy Foundation and the Red Cross. Some people are taking advantage of the program — Miller said firefighters installed 10 smoke detectors Thursday — but it more should be using it.
Making the call is easy. And after a year like this, there are plenty of examples of why getting the alarms installed is a good idea.
Click a flag for the date and location of the fire. Red flags indicate arson.