ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — According to a new Illinois law, by 2023, all homes built prior to 1988 must have 10-year, sealed battery smoke detectors installed.
Homes with hard wired smoke detectors will not be affected by the change.
Illinois lawmakers passed the measure in 2017. The new sealed battery detectors cost about $20.
Belvidere Fire Chief Al Hyser says modern synthetic materials make smoke detectors critical.
“It’s so important today, to have a working smoke detector, to give you that chance to get out, because we are only getting 3 minutes now, because of what’s burning in our homes, as opposed to older generations, who had a lot more time to escape,” Hyser said.
In 2018, there were more than 100 people who died in a house fire, statewide. Nearly 70 percent of those didn’t have a working smoke detector.
In Rockford, new statistics released by the Rockford Fire Department show that the number of fires in the Forest City have dropped by about one-fifth of a percent over last year.
Fire crews in Rockford responded to just over 22,000 calls so far this year, about 82 calls per day.
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