Batteries Plus, the nation's first, largest and fastest-growing battery and light bulb franchise with seven locations in the St. Louis area, is helping to educate consumers about fire and smoke alarm safety as a part of National Fire Prevention Week (October 7-13, 2012). This year's theme from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is "Have 2 Ways Out!"

According to the National Fire Protection website, once fire strikes a home, it can be engulfed in flames in a matter of minutes. The smoke alarm is the first line of defense to surviving a fire. Having 2 Ways Out is the second. Batteries Plus is doing its part to ensure every household and family in America has a functioning smoke alarm by urging residents to help protect themselves and their families before tragedy strikes. Batteries Plus has also donated smoke alarm batteries to the Florissant Valley Fire Department to help support fire safety.

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Residents should know the following smoke alarm facts and figures:

* Almost two-thirds (62%) of reported home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes with no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms. Seventy five percent of smoke alarm failures are caused by missing, dead or disconnected batteries. 
* Working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in reported home fires in half.
* Ensure you are testing smoke alarms monthly. A short, low beep every 60 seconds indicates the battery is low and needs to be replaced
* Replace smoke alarm batteries annually.
* Replace smoke alarms every 10 years.. 
* Install a minimum of one smoke alarm outside every bedroom and in every sleeping area. If it is a two-story house, install at least one per floor.
* Choose a smoke alarm that has been certified by Underwriters Laboratories (UL).
* If you or someone in the household is hearing impaired, choose a smoke alarm that includes a built in strobe light providing both audible and visible signals.
* Even if your smoke alarm is connected to your home's electrical system, you still need a backup battery in case of power outages.

* Lithium batteries are an excellent choice for smoke alarms because they last longer and are more reliable than alkaline batteries. Batteries Plus offers the Ultra Life Battery LITHU9VLX smoke alarm batteries designed to last up to 10 years without being replaced. 
* Batteries Plus also has a large selection of regular and extended-life alkaline batteries if your smoke alarm uses AA or AAA batteries.

"We want to help people understand that the presence of a smoke alarm alone can't save lives - it has to have batteries that work," said Steve Donnell, local Batteries Plus franchisee. "A smoke alarm with functioning batteries can alert people to fire and give them time to escape in a situation where minutes can mean the difference between life and death."

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This year the NFPA is also urging the public to make the most of the minutes available to escape by having, and practicing, an escape plan with 2 Ways Out. Fire can spread rapidly through the home, leaving as little as two minutes to escape once the smoke alarm sounds. Here are some safety tips from the NFPA website:

* Make an escape plan and discuss it with all residents in the building.
* Know at least two ways out of every room.
* Have an outside meeting place
* Practice the fire drill at night and during the day, twice a year.
* Practice different ways out.
* Teach children how to escape on their own.
* Close doors on leaving.

Remember, the smoke alarm's message is to get out and stay out. A practiced escape plan, with two ways out, dramatically increases the likelihood of surviving a fire.

Batteries Plus provides 9V batteries for smoke alarms and carbon monoxide
detectors, along with thousands of other batteries for items like cell/smart
phones, emergency/exit signs, flashlights and UPS back-ups, all of which are
essential items to have in case a fire emergency strikes. Batteries Plus
also has access to over 10,000 unique light bulbs, including those that
should be replaced in emergency/exit signs and flashlights. If you need a
new flashlight, Batteries Plus stocks the widest selection of handheld
flashlights, lanterns, head lamps, and industrial flashlights, including the
Rayovac R Indestructible flashlight.



There are seven Batteries Plus locations in the St. Louis area. We are located in Ballwin, Chesterfield, St. Peters, South County, Florissant, and Creve Coeur in Missouri and in Fairview Heights, IL. Batteries Plus is the nation's first, largest and fastest-growing battery and light bulb
franchise. Batteries Plus, ranked as the #1 Retail Battery Franchise by both Entrepreneur Magazine's Franchise 500 and D&B, has over 520 locations in 46 states and Puerto Rico. Batteries Plus is owned by Roark Capital Group, an Atlanta-based private equity firm. With access to more than 40,000 types of batteries, light bulbs and accessories, Batteries Plus
has the widest selection of battery and light bulb products available and offers unmatched service to consumers, businesses and government entities at the national and local levels. Batteries Plus continues its reign as the undisputed leader in the expanding $30.7 billion U.S. battery replacement market and in the growing U.S. light bulb replacement market estimated to be
at $17 billion. To learn more about our exciting franchise opportunities please visit

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