Monday, July 07, 2008

A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To Bed Last Night

One of my biggest fears having Alex in the basement and something bad happening. We have 4 fire alarms in the basement along with a carbon monoxide detector incase there is a fire. Since we live next to the dike levee and this house did flood in 1993, when the dike fills with water we have her sleep upstairs. I always play out Titanic in my head and it freaks me out so it's the couch for her if we have nearby flood water. For that possibility of a flood in the house we have a flood system installed, 2 sump pump holes with 2 pumps in each hole, drain tile, and an up flush system that takes the water above ground level and dumps it out on the yard. The one thing we need here and have not installed is a $5K egress window incase the house ever was to catch on fire. Kids are smart and about a month ago Alex asked how to get out if there was a fire. I didn't know what to tell her except try to come up the stairs and if not we'd have to break a window from outside to get her out. Let's pray that never happens.

So last night she was in bed and the fire alarm started going off while we were watching TV on the couch around 9 pm. She flew upstairs and we flew downstairs to find nothing but earlier Dave and my dad worked on our water heater as it suddenly started leaking. They ended up draining it, shutting off the gas and fixing the drain on the outside as that was the source. I told Dave that I had heard that sometimes smoke detectors can pick up other issues going on such as carbon monoxide and since we worked on the water heater that could be what was going on. The only other thing that came to mind was that on the smoke detector itself it said keep it clean of dust and when they had used the shop vac to clean up all the water maybe since it hadn't been used forever it put a bunch of dust in the air. We pushed the shut off button and went back upstairs putting Alex back to bed.

Forty-five minutes later it starts going off again. This time we get alittle concerned. I told Dave that maybe we should call the fire station for suggestions as to why this was happening. Well his call ended up taken WAY to seriously. Turned out the supposed NON-emergency regular number goes into the County 911 dispatch center. When I heard her say 911 on the phone I told him to tell her it wasn't an emergency we just needed some advice and when they came to keep it low-key please. We THOUGHT she said she'd send someone over with a Carbon Monoxide detector, instead we have a guy come over in his regular truck who is a fire fighter who lives nearby just to check on us and then 4 fire trucks show up, LIGHTS AND SIRENS. I was so red when they got to the door and entered 1 by 1.

The woman who did the report first asked for us to wake everyone and evacuate the house and I begged not to. Since we didn't show any of the signs of poisoning she said we'd wait and see what the final verdict was from the 5 heavily armed firefighters trudging throughout my house. Final Verdict: Faulty Smoke Detector, throw it away or take it to the lawn and demolish it. lol They tried everything, running the furnace and the water heater putting the detector against them both at different spots and around the basement but there was no traces of carbon monoxide. We all laughed in the end (I was dying of embarrassment) and said better to be safe than sorry. I felt a bit bad because the dept is volunteer since we don't live in the city and these older folks had to leave their homes probably ready for bed, get geared up and come to my house all for nothing. They were totally fine with it though saying they live for action. The lady told me that the day before they had to fight a grass fire and since it was in the afternoon, all the young volunteers were at their day jobs so all of their "older volunteers" had to work it about killing over from the heat. She said this is MUCH better than responding to that type situation.

The 3 of us finally got to bed around 11 and slept soundly knowing that there was no possibility of any sort of leak. I am so sure however that I'll be hearing from some neighbor asking about the action going on here last night. If they didn't hear it, I'm sure they all saw the lights from the 4 trucks.


kbreints said...

OMG! Better to be safe than saorry though... CAnn never get them there fast enough when you need them, and they are there in full force when you don't! glad it was all fine!

Lucia's Mom said...

Don't be embarrassed though, you were looking after your kids! Sure, it's volunteer, but that is what they're there for, to help people. Just be thankful it WAS nothing serious!

I'm glad you called them.

Kristi Ann said...

Hehehehe.....I'm sure the ol' sweeties (volunteers) LOVE it...its gets their hearts a racin' and their blood flowing! :)

I am SO glad it turned out to be nothing!!