July 2008
The World Fire Safety Foundation
Why BRK Supports Photoelectric-Specific Legislation
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First Alert, Inc. (“First Alert”) is the world’s largest smoke alarm manufacturer.  First Alert
sells ionization and photoelectric smoke detectors through its wholly owned subsidiary,
BRK Brands Inc.

In their 1980 report, the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) warned ionization
smoke alarms would not safely detect smouldering fires.

The IAFC addressed the combination ionization/photoelectric issue stating:

Why BRK Supports Photoelectric-Specific Legislation
23 July, 2008

BRK - Official Position on
Photoelectric-Specific Legislation

Download:  Here > > >

...the ionization detector has a considerably higher potential
for false alarms. It does not make sense to add that
disadvantage to an already sufficient photoelectric detector.”

In their Position Statement and latest product packing (see both below), BRK admits to,
and provides scientific evidence of, the unacceptably high false alarm problem with ionization
smoke alarms.  Scientific studies show photoelectric alarms will false alarm at approximately
one eighth the rate of ionization alarms.

BRK’s reason to promote photoelectric smoke alarms, the unacceptably high incidence of false

alarms, concurs with global research, including the research listed in their document below, and:

  1. -IAFC’s Residential Smoke Alarm Report’, September, 1980

  2. -AFAC’s Position on Smoke Alarms in Residential Accommodation, June, 2006

  3. -IAFF’s Official Position on Smoke Alarms, August, 2008

  4. -FPAA’s official position on smoke alarms, May, 2011

Smoke Alarm Legislation
Technology of Choice

Fewer false alarms, LESS
confusion and frustration

Photoelectric Sensors
stops most false alarms
Wording on BRK’s Photoelectric Smoke Alarm Packaging
April, 2011 |  Twin Pack Photoelectric - US$22.79 ($11.40 each)  |  Costco, California, USA