LAUREL, MS (WDAM) - American Red Cross volunteers, along with Laurel firefighters, will be visiting dozens of homes in East Laurel this weekend to speak to residents about fire safety.
It's part of a nationwide campaign to reduce the number of injuries and deaths due to home fires by 25 percent within the next five years.
On Saturday morning, volunteers will canvass several neighborhoods and will hand out brochures on fire safety and home safety checklists. They'll also assess the need for any smoke detectors in the homes.
"For the people that are (at home), we're going to check smoke detectors, if the batteries work," said Lattrice Averette, branch office coordinator for the East Central Mississippi Chapter of the American Red Cross. "If they don't, we're going to install batteries. If they don't have one, we're going to come back out on the 18th and we're going to be installing smoke detectors for families that don't have any," she said.
According to the American Red Cross, 43 fire-related fatalities have been reported in Mississippi so far in 2014.