Operation Save A Life kicks off free smoke detector campaign

ABC11 is working with Kidde to make sure every home has a working smoke detector through Operation Save A Life, which kicked off its annual campaign Wednesday.

The mission is to increase awareness of fire safety and injury prevention with free fire alarms.

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ABC11 along with Kidde - which donates the alarms - Home Depot and the UNC Hospitals Jaycee Burn Unit team up each year to distribute the life saving devices.

"It's giving smoke detectors to people in need, and that's a huge component, but another component is just to make it top of mind," ABC11 General Manger Carolina Welch said.

Welch reminded everyone Wednesday at the kickoff event that one 1 of 5 homes does not have a working smoke detector.

UNC Hospitals Jaycee Burn Unit has treated so many cases this year, they're on track to see 1,700.

"We're trying our best to reduce those injuries because we know how devastating those injuries cam be," said Dr. Ernest Grant with UNC Jaycee Burn Unit. "So it's a great way to enlist the help of the people who are here with us today."

If you need a smoke detector, reach out to your local fire department.

There is no need to worry about changing the batteries officials say, because the free detectors being distributed are good for a decade.

"They don't start until you turn them on the first time," Apex Deputy Fire Marshal David Dillon said. "In 10 years, it starts beeping."

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