Spring forward: Chattanooga Firefighters to distribute free smoke alarms Saturday

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Just like they do every year, Chattanooga firefighters went door-to-door back in 2016 and installed 63 free smoke alarms to homeowners. (Photo: Chattanooga Fire Department)

At each time change in the Spring and Fall, the Chattanooga Fire Department and American Red Cross team up to distribute free smoke alarms to homes in different areas throughout the city.

This time, it's in Highland Park.

Firefighters and Red Cross volunteers will canvass the neighborhood, knocking on each door and offering to install smoke alarms, test existing smoke alarms to ensure that they work, or install fresh batteries if needed. Fire safety materials are also distributed for educational purposes.

The Chattanooga Fire Department says this is an important public safety campaign that can save lives. It coincides with the weekend that we change to Daylight Saving Time, which means that when everyone changes their clocks forward one hour before going to bed Saturday night, they should also put fresh batteries in all of their smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.

Throughout the morning the crews installed 38 smoke detectors and replaced 27 batteries.

They went to every single house in the neighborhood offering to install free smoke detectors.

We reported several fires this season in the Chattanooga area ... including this one .. just last Thursday.

Fire Marshall William Matlock says, "Unfortunately this year we had a higher number of fires this year that previous years."

And while Fire Marshal William Matlock says there is no rhyme or reason to higher numbers he says that some could have been avoided

if smoke detectors were used properly. Which is why the crews hit the streets today.

Matlock says that it is not the typical Saturday but this is a day every year that he enjoys.

"The excitement and the joy of knowing that when we leave here we put in 40 smoke alarms, we know that we made the community safer."