Volunteers from the St. Paul Park refinery in Minnesota worked with the American Red Cross in May to install free smoke alarms for people in the community who signed up for a home fire safety visit. The effort was part of the nationwide Sound the Alarm campaign with a goal of installing 50,000 free smoke alarms in at-risk communities. Employees teamed up with other volunteers from the American Red Cross and the local fire department to install 57 alarms in 29 homes.
“Teams went out to install smoke alarms in the St. Paul Park area to make homes safer,” said Nick Cluppert, Sr. Disaster Program Manager at American Red Cross in Wisconsin. “Thank you to all the volunteers, Marathon employees and the local fire department that helped to make this a successful event.”
St. Paul Park refinery Fire Chief John Wright coordinated the event in partnership with the American Red Cross. He took a few members of the local fire department out a few days before the event to let homeowners know about the campaign and how they could sign up. On the day of the event, volunteers went door to door asking people if they had smoke detectors, how old the smoke detectors were, and installed new ones as needed.
“Safety is a core value at Marathon Petroleum, and that extends to the people in our communities,” said Wright. “We want to make sure that people have the tools they need and a plan in place to stay safe during an emergency.”
The American Red Cross reports that seven people die in home fires every day, and most often the home did not have working smoke alarms. The American Red Cross recommends having smoke alarms on every level of a house and outside each sleeping area. You should also test your smoke alarms at least once a month. The American Red Cross has put together list of Home Fire Safety tips to make sure your home has the fire safety equipment needed in case of emergency.
“It was really rewarding to be able to meet so many wonderful people. We left their homes knowing that they were a little more protected in case of a fire,” said Bonnie DeKoster, Senior Administrative Assistant at the refinery who volunteered at the Sound the Alarm event.