SAN DIEGO — A group of SDA Security employees recently volunteered to help install fire/life-safety products in the homes of elderly persons in San Diego County. Pairing with volunteers from the Burn Institute, a nonprofit health agency, 16 SDA staffers traveled across the area on May 5 installing 232 smoke alarms and 44 carbon monoxide (CO) detectors in elderly residences throughout the day.
The charitable effort, billed as the Cinco de Mayo Smoke Detector Day, was inspired in part by a grim statistic: Nearly 1,000 elderly persons die each year due to fire, according to the U.S. Fire Administration. The Burn Institute provided the volunteers with all the necessary equipment, smoke alarms and batteries, along with a mapped out route for each group of volunteers.
For each residence, the teams installed one smoke detector per bedroom, and another in common areas, plus one CO detector per floor in each home. Lithium batteries were also put in to existing smoke detectors. This was done to help prevent injury resulting from falls that often occur when elderly residents climb ladders to replace batteries.
“As a company we have been serving Southern California for over 80 years, but this type of service is very rewarding,” says Mike Ferreira, senior sales representative and 25-year SDA employee. “Three of the six homes my group went to did not have a single smoke detector installed. That is a scary statistic. I feel like we may have really saved someone’s life.”