According to Wormald , smoke alarms provide occupants with valuable seconds needed to safely escape a fire. Legislation introduced in NSW in May 2006 requires all residents have at least one smoke alarm installed on each level of the home.
An appropriate location for a smoke alarm is near the bedroom for the maximum noise impact to wake sleeping occupants during the night.
Photoelectric and Ionisation are the two smoke alarm technologies, each suited for different areas of the house. Photoelectric smoke alarms detect smoke from slow smouldering fires, for example, those generated by overheated electrical wiring or a discarded cigarette.
Ionisation smoke alarms detect less visible smoke, including fumes from cooking, and respond quickly to fast flaming fires.