Clocks. Flickr Photo.

ITHACA, N.Y. — It’s time to turn the clocks back this weekend as daylight saving time officially ends at 2 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 4.

When turning back clocks, the American Red Cross also reminds people to test smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms this weekend too.

As the cold weather seeps in and you begin to turn the heat on, it’s a good time to make sure smoke alarms have fresh batteries and are working properly. Heating equipment is the second-most common cause of home fire fatalities, according to the National Fire Protection Association, behind cooking. They accounted for 15 percent of all reported home fires in 2011-15 and 19 percent of home fire deaths. The biggest culprit behind home heating-related fires is space heaters, the NFPA says.

Here are three steps the American Red Cross recommends:

  1. Check smoke alarm batteries. When turning the clocks back, take a few minutes to replace the smoke alarm batteries if needed and push the test button to make sure the alarms are working. It’s also a great time to check carbon monoxide detectors.
  2. Install smoke alarms. If you don’t have working smoke alarms, install them. At a minimum, put one on every level of the home, inside bedrooms and outside sleeping areas. Check local building codes for additional requirements.
  3. Practice an escape plan. Make sure everyone in the household knows two ways to get out of every room and how to get out of the home in less than two minutes.

Featured image: Flickr Photo.

Kelsey O'Connor

Kelsey O'Connor is the managing editor for the Ithaca Voice. Questions? Story tips? Contact her at and follow her on Twitter @bykelseyoconnor.