Local fire department offers smoke detectors

GW students may get free smoke detectors from the D.C. Fire Department’s Engine 23 station on 2119 G St.

Captain Alan Dutton said it is easy for people who don’t have a working fire detector to get one.

You put your hand out, and we put one in, he said.

But Dutton cautioned the offer is not a wholesale liquidation and said supplies are limited.

The ongoing effort of the department is an attempt to ensure all Foggy Bottom residents have a working smoke detector.

Nobody knows (this service) exists, Dutton said. He has provided this service for several years, even before working in the Foggy Bottom area. Dutton said other departments are following his example.

Several years ago, Radio Shack and Channel 9 joined forces and sold thousands of smoke detectors to Washington-area fire departments for a minimal cost, for free distribution to District residents.

But the smoke detectors have remained largely undistributed at the stations. The cost to the fire department is minimal and well worth it, said Captain Bryan Lee, a public information officer with the D.C. Fire Department’s Public Affairs office.

We’ve had these things for a while, Lee said. Captain Dutton had the foresight to have his units carry them around.

Dutton requires his fire trucks to carry the extra smoke detectors for possible distribution.

I don’t want to go into a place without them, and I certainly don’t want to leave a place without them, he said.

-Sean Michael Lee

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