smoke alrm

Do you have the right smoke alarm in your Brisbane home?

The difference between having a photoelectric smoke alarm or an ionisation smoke alarm installed in your home could also be the difference between life and death in a fire situation. Over 90% of Australian homes have the wrong smoke alarms installed, potentially giving residents less than 3 minutes to escape in a fire.

Think you’re safe just because you have a smoke alarm?

A recent 60 Minutes report (Oct 19, 2014) claimed the 2011 Slacks Creek fire tragedy which caused the deaths of 11 people could have been avoided had the family installed photoelectric fire alarms instead of ionisation alarms.

Ionisation vs Photoelectric smoke alarms

An ionisation smoke alarm reacts to heat and flames. Unfortunately in a smouldering fire by the time this alarm goes off, you could only have 3 minutes to get out of the house. This seems like a long time to get out the door, but most smouldering fires occur while residents are asleep. Meaning, potentially, you wake from the alarm, disoriented in a smoky room and then face the task of getting yourself and your family out of a smoke filled house or flat, in under 180 seconds.

Think you’ll wake from the smell of smoke? Wrong, when you sleep so does your sense of smell.

A photoelectric smoke alarm (also referred to as an optical or photo-optical smoke alarm) is activated by the visible particles in smoke, meaning they’ll detect a smouldering fire much faster and give you more time to evacuate. This style of smoke alarm is also less prone to nuisance alarms like when you’re cooking.

The Queensland Fire and Rescue Service recommend using photoelectric smoke alarms in your home as they are better at detecting the wider range of fires that occur in Brisbane homes. The QFRS advise that if you already have ionisation smoke alarms installed that you supplement with photoelectric alarms, particularly between sleeping areas and the exits of your home.

The Northern Territory is the first state to regulate that homeowners replace ionisation alarms with photoelectric alarms in a bid to reduce fire-related fatalities.

Smoke Alarms Brisbane

Fallon Solutions electrical team take fire safety very seriously, our master electricians receive regular training to ensure we provide the very best, up to date advice on location, placement and smoke alarm type for your home.

If you are unsure whether your smoke alarm is ionisation or photoelectric or if your home contains sufficient alarms to keep your family safe during a potential fire situation contact us for a fire safety review.