It's that time of year when we move our clocks ahead an hour and gain a little bit of extra sunlight in our day. In case you've forgotten, Daylight Savings Time starts this Sunday, March 11th at 2am.

If there's one thing you do this weekend, please make a point to check the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to make sure that they’re functioning and replace the batteries if needed. I know we've all watched This Is Us and that we are aware, more now than ever, how important replacing batteries is, but you might want to go an extra step. Grab your vacuum and run it over the detectors to keep them free of dust and other stuff so they work properly.

In my house, we have battery operated smoke and carbon monoxide alarms that talk to each other, so if one goes off, they all start going off and not only do they beep, but they speak, telling us to evacuate. I thought that we had a pretty complex smoke and carbon monoxide detection system, but in April of 2019, New York State will roll out a new campaign in an attempt to keep people safer.

As of April 1, 2019, all battery operated smoke alarms sold in New York State will come with batteries that have a 10-year life and you're unable to remove the batteries.

Forget about This Is Us for a second and just think about all of the tragedies we've seen in this area alone of people, even entire families, dying in house fires because they didn't have working smoke alarms. The hope is that with these new smoke detectors with non-removable batteries, people won't forget to change them out, and won't be able to borrow the batteries for other gadgets. This should lead to fewer malfunctions and hopefully more lives saved.

By the way, if you're a renter, under New York State law, your landlord is responsible for making sure that you have adequate smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. If they haven't provided these for you, you might want to send them a copy of the rules as issued by the New York State Assembly.