Community social worker Ken McDonnell wants smoke alarms at the top of your Christmas wish list.

Ken is part of Wesley Community Action’s Older Persons Team.  He says 40% of clients recently surveyed did not have a smoke alarm.  Many older persons are tenants, living on a fixed income and not even aware of the need for smoke alarms.

In July 2016 all tenanted properties will be required by law to have a smoke alarm.  Landlords will be responsible for ensuring an alarm is operational.  Tenants will be responsible for replacing batteries or notifying landlords of defects.  Ken says don’t wait until then, get adequate alarms now.

Every year the New Zealand Fire Service attend more than 3,500 house fires.  In 80% of the fatal fires they attend smoke alarms are either not installed or not working.

Ken urges everyone to visit the Fire Service website for more information.