Red Cross installs 5,000th smoke alarm

Published 8:22 am Friday, January 25, 2019

Seeks volunteers to help install more in county

The American Red Cross is celebrating its installation of 5,000 free smoke alarms in the past four years in the Ohio River Valley and is looking for more volunteers to help install them in Lawrence County.

“More alarms could be installed, and potentially more lives saved, if we could get additional volunteers,” said Ohio River Valley Red Cross Community Executive Debbie Smith “We’re having a hard time keeping up right now, because the demand for the free alarms is really high.”

She added that they have a waiting list of over 100 homes that need smoke alarms installed and not enough volunteers to install them.
Currently, Ohio River Valley Red Cross has only two volunteers to install alarms in the six counties of Lawrence, Adams, Brown, Jackson, Pike and Scioto which makes up its service area.

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The smoke alarm installation effort is part of the Home Fire Campaign, a nationwide Red Cross program, started in 2014, with the goal of reducing home fire deaths and injuries by 25 percent.

Working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in a home fire in half.

Volunteering with a smoke alarm team is easy, no experience is needed. Volunteers are trained prior to going out and additionally once on the job.

Anyone wishing to volunteer can sign up at Anyone wishing to have a free smoke alarm installed in their home can call the Portsmouth office at 740-354-3293 or 1-888-354-3293.

The smoke alarms —as well as all disaster-related services provided by the Red Cross — are free.

The Red Cross is not a governmental agency; the cost to provide these services come from donations provided by the generosity of the American public.

Anyone wishing to make a donation can go to, call 740-354-3293, 1-800-REDCROSS or text REDCROSS to 90999.