Metro Fire Crews Install Smoke Detectors For The Hearing Impaire - News9.com - Oklahoma City, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports |

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Metro Fire Crews Install Smoke Detectors For The Hearing Impaired

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Midwest City Fire Prevention Officer Joel Bain has been making house calls to meet with residents who are hearing impaired. Midwest City Fire Prevention Officer Joel Bain has been making house calls to meet with residents who are hearing impaired.
MIDWEST CITY, Oklahoma -

Midwest City Fire Prevention Officer Joel Bain has been making house calls to meet with residents who are hearing impaired.

He's installing a sense of security for some who can't solely rely on the sound of a smoke detector.

The systems were funded in part by a special grant through FEMA and distributed by OSU-OKC and local fire departments.

Lawrence Willis is a retired airman and lives in Midwest City. He said he can’t hear anything when he goes to bed without a hearing aid.

“If there was a fire or something and I was asleep, I would not hear it. It could be a loss of life,” he explained.

But now if there's an emergency, a bright strobe light Bain installed will flash while the alarm goes off.

And the alarm also triggers a small disc that shakes violently.

It was placed under the mattress to shake Willis out of his slumber during an emergency.

“Studies have shown that every 30 seconds a fire doubles in size. So that 30 seconds is huge in trying to get people out as soon as possible,” said Bain.

And the new physical alerts could give him that time to escape, and even a better shot at survival.

“This way, at least I’ll have a chance,” Willis said.

Bain said so far there have been 23 systems installed. Each resident gets a new 10-year smoke detector as well, along with a fire extinguisher. All in all, Bain said the products residents are receiving for free are worth $200.

The need is big for residents in Midwest City. Bain said there's a waiting list. He expects to get another shipment of the system soon to help fill the need.

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