American Red Cross - Cascades Region
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News Release
VIDEO: Red Cross to install free smoke alarms in North Portland on September 16th - 09/16/23

Red Cross joins with Team Rubicon and Portland Fire to provide free home fire safety information.  


Video and B-Roll:

(Interview is with Red Cross volunteer John Sheehan. Speech by Portland Fire Lt. Chris Schimmer) 


Portland, Ore (September 15, 2023) — On Saturday, September 16th, volunteers, and members of Team Rubicon, along with the Portland Fire Bureau, will install free smoke alarms for local families vulnerable to home fires in the Boise, Elliott, King, Vernon, and Humboldt neighborhoods. This home fire safety event is part of the national Red Cross Home Fire Campaign aimed at reducing fire deaths and injuries across the country. 

Residents can visit to schedule an appointment for a free smoke alarm installation. 

Red Cross volunteers and our Team Rubicon partners will meet in the north parking lot of the Red Cross Portland Chapter Office on September 16th at 9am. We’ll install alarms in the neighborhoods from 9:30 am to 4:00 pm. During the 20-minute home visits, the teams will also share information on the causes of home fires, how to prevent them, what to do if a fire starts and how to create an escape plan.  


“Every second counts when there’s a home fire because you may have as little as two minutes to escape before it’s too late,” says Priscilla Fuentes, Red Cross Cascades CEO. “That’s why Red Cross volunteers will be out helping families take critical steps to protect themselves against these everyday disasters.” 


HOW TO PROTECT YOUR FAMILY. To help protect your family from a home fire, place smoke alarms on each level of your home, including inside and outside bedrooms and sleeping areas. Test alarms monthly and change the batteries at least once a year if your model requires it. Create a home fire escape plan with at least two ways to exit every room in your home. Practice your plan until everyone in your household can get out in less than two minutes. 


OUR CAMPAIGN TO #ENDHOMEFIRES.  Since the inception of the Home Fire Campaign, we have documented 1,919 lives saved, 32% (616) of which were children under 18. As part of the campaign in north Portland, we hope to reach more vulnerable communities and increase the number of lives saved.  


About the American Red Cross: 

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides comfort to victims of disasters; supplies blood to 65 hospitals in the Northwest and about 40% of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; distributes international humanitarian aid; and supports veterans, military members and their families. The Red Cross is a nonprofit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to deliver its mission. For more information, please visit or, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross. 


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