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Photoelectric vs. Ionization Smoke Alarms


Collection of Residential Smoke Alarm Research

This report was scanned from hardcopy. 

Combination Smoke Alarms - A Dangerous Compromise, Dean Dennis

"Ionization detectors are many minutes slow to alarm in a smoldering fire but seconds faster in a flaming fire when compared to a photoelectric detector."

"Most people die from smoke inhalation."

"Ionization detectors alarm at a much greater rate than photoelectric detectors."

"The easy path might be to keep quiet or reach simplistic conclusions and tell us dual-sensors are the way to go.  It would be easy to take a non-controversial stance that would please everybody and allow everyone that promoted ionization detectors to save face." 

"...in court testimony during the notable Mercer case (Mercer v. BRK/Pitway), when an ionization detector failed to alarm resulting in the death of a child, a company official testified that the dual-sensor alarm is desensitized versus the stand alone technology."

'What seems clear is that the dual-sensor detector is a convenient compromise.  It is a mistake that will cost lives."

See Page 92 of PDF






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