Don't risk your life over a smoke alarm

SMOKE alarms are inexpensive, simple to fit - but can save your life.It seems incredible that in 2009 there are any homes without these simple pieces of equipment that can mean the difference between life and death in an emergency.

SMOKE alarms are inexpensive, simple to fit - but can save your life.

It seems incredible that in 2009 there are any homes without these simple pieces of equipment that can mean the difference between life and death in an emergency.

Their importance was shown up at two house fires in Ipswich over the weekend which could so easily have had tragic outcomes.

Simple but effective alarms can be bought for �5 at any DIY or household store - and there is plenty of advice available on how and where to fit them.


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For those who are elderly or disabled, the fire service can arrange to have an alarm fitted professionally.

Of course fitting an alarm is only part of the answer - it has to be properly maintained.

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But that should not be difficult. The only maintenance most people have to carry out is to ensure that the battery is working properly and if necessary changing it every few months.

Smoke alarms may not be glamorous - but they could the most important gadget that you have in your house.

AS Britain heads into recession, people in Suffolk will not be immune from the effects of the downturn.

But while many businesses may suffer and it seems inevitable that there will be an increase in the number of people without jobs, for some businesses there is a clear opportunity.

Trading on the high street may not have been as bad as some people feared over Christmas, but there remains pressure on shops as we enter 2009.

This is traditionally the quietest time of the year for most retailers, and this year looks like being more difficult than most for them.

However as we tighten our belts, there could be a real opportunity later in the year for East Anglian tourist attractions as families look to spend money on days out from home rather than going away for a fortnight in the sun.

A name for this phenomenon - the staycation - has already been coined and it seems that thousands of us are now preparing to make the most of the great attractions we have on our doorsteps.

That could be good news for resorts like Felixstowe and other attractions which help make Suffolk one of the most beautiful counties in Britain - there are far worse places to spend your holiday!

IAN Chittick is one of the luckiest people in the world as he returns to work today following his horrendous accident on the A14 last week.

Seeing the wreckage of his van after his accident at Sproughton, it seems incredible that anyone could have survived - let alone walked clear with only a few scratches to show for the accident.

He knows today what a lucky man he is - and how fortunate he is that he was not carrying anyone in the passenger seat which was mangled beyond recognition in the crash.

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