[ExI] quiet growth

BillK pharos at gmail.com
Sat Dec 20 09:10:15 UTC 2014

On Fri, Dec 19, 2014 at 3:59 PM, spike wrote:
> So here's my line of reasoning in reference to quiet growth.  Building codes
> were derived to require smoke detectors which have a battery backup in case
> power fails in a fire (that can happen of course, so we get the reasoning
> behind it.)  But the batteries drain over time, and when the battery gets
> low, it causes chirping, then proles damage or slay themselves in the
> attempt to remedy the situation in the middle of the night.  Perhaps the
> requirement for a battery backup damaged or slew more proles than it saved.
> Over the years, building codes have reduced electrical fires to practically
> nothing, so the advantage of a battery backup has declined while the number
> of drunken and/or stoned geezers has increased.  So we may have a rare case
> where building codes should go directly from requiring battery backup in
> smoke detectors to prohibiting battery backup in smoke detectors.
> I live in an area where I estimate there are 100k people close enough to my
> abode such that if a house fire occurs, I can hear the siren.  I estimate
> that area has less than 5 house fires per year, so 5 in 100k, scale that to
> the nation, I get around 10k to 20k house fires per year.  A house might
> have an average of 3 residents, so one might be up around the 40 kiloproles
> per year impacted by house fires, but wait; my original notion was that the
> battery backup in the smoke detectors.  Only a fraction of these would fail
> because of the power being off in a house fire, the majority of which in our
> modern times are caused by the residents becoming stoned or drunk and
> forgetting something on the stove, in which case the power goes right on
> (kitchens are on a separate circuit protected by ground fault breakers.)
> I would estimate that about four times as much damage or serious death is
> caused by battery-backups in smoke detectors than is prevented.
> So what do we do?

Recalculate your stats ???  :)

Most detector batteries will be replaced once per year, in daylight,
carefully, when sober. i.e. regular maintenance, not midnight drunken
panic. :)  You can also get lithium batteries that last 7-10 years,
so, as that is about the expected life of a detector, you just replace
the whole unit.
A local handyman can do all that for elderly people.

A house fire is a much more significant accident than maybe falling
off low steps while replacing a battery. Most people will rarely fall
off low steps, and even if they do, most will not come to any serious

I think that if battery changing was causing many serious accidents
there would be a public reaction to all the deaths and injuries.
Similar to the campaign that got the detectors installed in the first
place!  :)


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