Fire Department to begin installing wireless detectors

Board thanks firefighters for grant efforts, raising awareness

By: Robin Ruehlen | Birmingham - Bloomfield Eagle | Published September 19, 2012

BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP — Officials with the Bloomfield Township Fire Department announced Monday that they will soon begin purchasing and installing nearly 1,700 wireless smoke detectors throughout the township’s multiresidential and adult foster care facilities, thanks to a recent federal grant.

Fire Inspector Doug Brown told the Board of Trustees Sept. 10 that the department is honored to be only one of four recipients of the highly competitive Department of Homeland Security grant, which amounts to $64,150. Bloomfield Township will share in 10 percent of the overall costs.

“The money will fund a project that enables early notification and protection of high-risk groups of children, adults and seniors in the 24 adult foster care facilities and the five most populated multiunit residential apartment/condominium complexes in Bloomfield Township,” Brown said.

Wireless detectors are interconnected, and they’re designed so that if one alarm is triggered, all alarms throughout the building will sound.

The Fire Department grant committee applied for the funds in May and received notification of the award in July.

Township Community Relations Director Leslie Helwig wrote in a press release that inspections of certain residential facilities over the past two years showed a lack of proper coverage, according to recommendations from the National Fire Protection Association.

The Square Lake Hills Condominium Association was the first to agree to install the wireless detectors to replace its aging ones, and after successful testing, it was determined that the project was worthy of requesting funds from the Assistance to Firefighters Grant program to address other multiresidential occupancies and the adult foster care facilities within the township.

Trustee Neal Barnett congratulated the Fire Department on its successful grant writing and for obtaining such an important grant.

“This will really be lifesaving and is beneficial to many of our residents, many of those who are special needs,” he said.

Trustee Corinne Khederian thanked the department for its efforts and for educating the community about wireless smoke detectors.

“So many of us have old fashioned ones, and I didn’t even realize until tonight that people could get notice sooner of something going on in their homes. So thank you — thank you for all that you do,” she said.

Installation of the wireless detectors will take place over the next 12 months and will be coordinated by the Fire Department to include private contractors, building owners and the maintenance providers at the facilities.

The Fire Department intends to submit a similar grant request next year to expand the program to all remaining multiresidential facilities. Call the fire prevention division at (248) 433-7745 for more information.