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Turn Back the Clock, Make the Safety Switch

  • Category: In the Community
  • Posted On:
  • Written By: Baton Rouge General

BRG Regional Burn Center Urges Residents to Change Smoke Detector Batteries

BATON ROUGE, La. – As Daylight Saving Time approaches on November 4, Baton Rouge General’s Regional Burn Center urges local residents to change their home’s smoke detector batteries when they turn back the clock for the time change. BRG is calling it the Safety Switch.

“This isn’t just a feel-good idea -- it could save your life,” said Dr. Jeffrey Littleton, a burn surgeon at BRG. “We see far too many people hurt in fires that could have been prevented. Working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in a home fire nearly in half.”

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), fire departments respond to a home fire every 86 seconds. Last winter, the Baton Rouge area experienced multiple cold snaps, resulting in 10 deaths from home fires in the first two weeks of 2018 – more than the entire year of 2017.

“Whether the fire’s caused by heating equipment, cooking or smoking, smoke alarms serve as a front-line tool in giving homeowners an early warning and time to escape,” said Dr. Littleton.

Looking at cases of home fire, NFPA estimates that 71 percent of smoke alarms failed to operate because they had missing, disconnected or dead batteries. “Smart” smoke detectors have emerged over the past few years and, while adding convenience like a low-battery alert sent to your smartphone, they still need their batteries changed annually.

BRG has the only verified burn center between Florida and Texas, and is one of only 68 in the U.S. that is held to specific standards by the American Burn Association through its verified status. Just like trauma patients should get the high level of care that level 1 trauma centers give, it’s important that burn patients get the treatment only a verified burn center can offer. BRG treats 90 percent of all burns in the region each year.

Learn more about the BRG Regional Burn Center’s resources and team of experts by visiting, and check out more tips on fire safety here.

About Baton Rouge General Medical Center
Baton Rouge General Medical Center is the area’s first community hospital with 588 licensed beds between two campuses. Baton Rouge General opened its doors in 1900, and has provided the Greater Baton Rouge community with high-quality healthcare for generations. An accredited teaching hospital since 1991, Baton Rouge General serves as an affiliate of Tulane University School of Medicine, and offers other medical education programs, including a School of Nursing, School of Radiologic Technology, Family Medicine Residency Program, Internal Medicine Residency Program, and Sports Medicine Fellowship Program. For more information, visit, find us on Facebook at and follow us on Twitter at @BRGeneral.