Benton Co. Sheriff hands out smoke detectors to mobile home parks


BENTON COUNTY, Wash. - The Benton County Sheriff’s Office remains vigilant in their effort to put smoke detectors in mobile homes across the county.

Over the weekend, Sheriff Jerry Hatcher went to 50 mobile homes to give out free smoke alarms. Out of those, 22 people answered the door, and they all did not have smoke detectors inside their house. The initiative started after two children were killed in a mobile home fire last month in Prosser.

“We'll get the message out and I want people -- if they see it, tell their friends,” Hatcher said. “If they know somebody that doesn't have them and stuff, encourage that because they truly save lives. I mean, we've seen it over and over and again, and when you don't have them, we see how fast they can lose lives as unfortunately, we had."

The sheriff’s office received nearly 500 smoke alarms from multiple businesses and residents. 

This weekend, Hatcher and deputies will go out to eight mobile home parks across the county. They’ll be focusing on Finley, Prosser and Benton City.

Hatcher said he will go out every weekend if he has to and ensure every home has a smoke detector.

“Simply running ads and doing all that, I don't know how effective that is because people will have to go out of their way,” Hatcher explained. “People have jobs, they're busy and stuff like that, so we decided to take it to them to try and just enhance success of the program."

If you miss the sheriff’s office, they don’t want you to worry. Detectors are available at their office. The Red Cross also has smoke detectors. You can call the sheriff’s office at (509) 735-6555 and get one.

Hatcher said they will not run out of smoke detectors, because he will go buy some if that is the case. He doesn’t want anyone to not have one in their home.

The sheriff said he believes last weekend was a success, and word about their presence to help the community got around quickly.

“We were about ready to leave and I had a young lady run us down and stuff and she actually had a pull-behind trailer and she needed a smoke detector,” Hatcher said. 

Sheriff Hatcher said this will not apply to only mobile homes. Anyone who is in need will get one from the sheriff’s office.

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