Smoke Detectors for the Hearing Impaired

We're learning of a new way to help the hearing impaired survive a fire.

The Bellevue Fire Department received 15 smoke detectors for the hearing impaired. They look like alarm clocks but they include a probe placed under a pillow that can vibrate and wake someone who is sleeping.

The units are courtesy of a donation from the Bellevue Volunteer Fire Department Inc.

Eight families have already been chosen to receive the detectors.

Bellevue Public Safety Officer Brian Koontz said, "This can save their life. As you saw in the demonstration, it's a very aggressive vibrator. If it’s under their pillow or under their body, it will certainly wake them up. Hopefully they never have to use it but it will give them peace of mind."

The detector runs on AC power and battery. It's activated through a regular smoke detector. When it sounds, the new unit goes to work.

The unit is portable and costs less than $130.

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