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Set your clock forward and check your batteries

Staff Report • Mar 12, 2012 at 8:17 AM

It’s time to “spring forward.” Daylight saving time begins at 2 a.m. Sunday. That means you should set your clock one hour ahead before going to bed tonight.

In addition to changing the time on your clocks, this is also a good time to change the batteries in your home’s smoke detectors. Daylight saving time has become an occasion for replacing batteries in smoke detectors in the home. Firefighters say having a properly functioning smoke detector in the home more than doubles a person’s chances of surviving a house fire.

Tennessee routinely ranks among the top states in the nation when it comes to the number of residents killed in house fires. Many of those lives might have been saved by a fully functioning smoke detector. That means a smoke detector should be checked regularly. And a smoke detector that has had its battery drained or removed is of no use in alerting a family to a fire.

There should be a smoke detector on each level of the house, inside every bedroom and outside the bedrooms in each sleeping area.

Residents who use gas or oil space heaters also should install a carbon monoxide detector outside every bedroom.

So don’t forget to set your clocks an hour ahead and change the batteries in your smoke detectors before going to sleep tonight.

It is up to you to do with that extra hour of daylight. Americans have had a love/hate relationship with daylight saving time. Golfers and gardeners love it. Theater owners and parents with schoolchildren hate it.

Nonetheless, daylight saving time has been a bright idea for curtailing energy use in the United States. The additional hour of sunlight has helped Americans save on their electric bills. It’s been a very simple idea: If there is light outdoors, there are fewer lights turned on inside homes across this country.

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