Tuesday, January 6, 2009


I have a friend, Richard Patton, who is a veritable crusader against the current fire alarms installed in most homes. He crusades against them because they are ineffective. He worked in the industry for years and knows of what he speaks. To condense the danger I'm repeating information from this website: www.hbsslaw.com/smokedetectors . Another is www.smokealarmdisclosure.org
Early warning is the key to surviving smoldering fires, the deadliest kind of home fire. Ionization technology to sense the presence of smoke is slow to warn, if it warns at all, especially smoldering fires which typically happen while occupants are sleeping. Most smoke detectors work on the principle of ionization. Smoke particles enter the chamber and the alarm triggers. Burning toast for instance, generates a lot of small particles and sounds the alarm. But smoke particles from a burning couch, for instance, are large and fewer in number and don't set off your alarm. Having a detector that doesn't work efficiently lulls you into a false sense of safety. And, in fact, many lives are lost each year because the industry continue to sell devices that don't do the job they were intended to do.
I'm an activist and that is a part of my personality, so message delivered.
On the personal front, Jim and I enjoyed a bike ride and picking fresh organic oranges. I also completed an interview with Bob Gambol who backpacked to 128 countries and one Sultanate in six years, in his fifties. He visited communist countries and places where tourists didn't and couldn't go. He avoided the usual European destinations. An amazing feat.

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