Springfield Fire Department firefighters began going door to door in the Weller neighborhood (bordered by National Avenue to the west, Glenstone Avenue to the east, Chestnut Expressway to the south and Commercial Street to the north) Saturday, June 15 as the department continues efforts to ensure that every Springfield resident has adequate warning of a fire in their home.
“After Weller, we plan to move deeper in Zone 2 into our residential areas without organized neighborhoods. This will include areas north of Division, south of I-44 , east of Glenstone and west of Highway 65,” said Fire and Life Safety Educator Heather Parker.
Since April 2017, Springfield firefighters have installed 2,732 smoke alarms in area neighborhoods as a part of Project RED Zone. They have visited 17,279 homes in the West Central, Grant Beach, Westside, Heart of the Westside, Robberson, Woodland Heights, Tom Watkins, Doling, Midtown and Bissett neighborhoods. In addition to the 2,700-plus installed alarms, firefighters have tested more than 5,000 alarms to ensure they are functioning properly and have replaced 782 batteries in existing alarms as a part of Project RED Zone.
Project RED Zone – a reference to the red areas on the Springfield Fire Department’s map of fire incidents – stands for Reduce, Educate, Deliver. It is part of SFD’s Community Risk Reduction (CRR) program. The multifaceted campaign aims to ensure all homes in high-risk areas of the city have working smoke alarms.
The program is already a proven success, with at least two lives saved as a result of smoke alarms installed during Project RED Zone canvassing. In September 2017, the occupant of a West Central neighborhood apartment was notified of a fire in a neighboring apartment by the smoke alarm that had been installed two months before by Springfield fire crews. In November of last year, the occupant of another West Central neighborhood apartment was notified of a fire in a unit below her when their smoke alarm sounded. That alarm had also been installed by Springfield fire crews the previous January.
Working smoke alarms double your chances of surviving a fire. Smoke alarms should be installed on every level of the home, in each bedroom and outside each sleeping area.
Project RED Zone is funded with the help of donations from the American Red Cross of Southern Missouri, Safe Kids Springfield, FEMA Fire Prevention and Safety grants and general revenue SFD funds designated for public education.
The Fire Department offers free smoke alarms and batteries to anyone in need. To obtain a free alarm, call 417-874-2300