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Focus On SW Philly Neighborhood In 'No More Fire Deaths' Campaign

By Paul Kurtz

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- The City of Philadelphia has resumed its "no more fire deaths" campaign with the focus on a neighborhood in Southwest Philly.

Small teams of Fire Department and Red Cross volunteers fanned out in Kingsessing, knocking on doors and offering residents free lithium powered smoke detectors.

"We started in Southwest because that's where we had the most fatalities and so we'll move based on the need around the city," says Red Cross CEO Renee Cardwell Hughes.


Commissioner Derrick Sawyer says they also urged people to develop an escape plan.

"Once the alarm goes off they still have to have a way out. And if they don't have a plan and that alarm goes off in the middle of the night, it's possible they won't get out."

Sawyer says studies have shown that occupants only have about three minutes to escape a burning home or apartment.

The program was launched in July and more than two thousand smoke detectors have been given away,  they're just getting started.

"We're gonna blanket this city. Neighborhood by neighborhood, home by home and make sure every family has a working smoke alarm and escape plan,"  says Hughes.

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