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Connecticut Holiday Tragedy: Functioning Smoke Detectors Could Have Saved This Family


Early Christmas morning in Stamford, Connecticut, the fire department rushed to the aid of Madonna Badger’s family as their home was engulfed in flames. The simple act of discarding ashes from the fireplace turned deadly when those ashes were not fully extinguished, sparking the blaze from outside the home. The heartbreaking news that both of Badger’s parents and her three young daughters perished in the fire turned what would normally be a joyous holiday into a time of mourning for friends, family, and community members in Stamford. Our hope, at ElectricMan Inc. is that this sad story will help drive home the message that smoke detectors are the most important safety feature that you can have in your home.

“Stamford’s team of fire investigators have stated that the now-demolished mansion at 2267 Shippan Ave. did not have an operational smoke detector system, and the second floor of the home was lacking building certificates” – Madonna Badger’s older home was being renovated at the time of the fire, with scaffoldings still in place throughout the holiday, and authorities speculate that the main reason the family wasn’t able to escape is because their home was not equipped with an operational smoke detector system. A new smoke detector system was probably in the plans for this home renovation, but the work had not been completed yet, leaving the family who was still occupying the home unprotected. Even if you are in the process of a smoke detector replacement project, it is vitally important to ensure that your family is protected throughout the process if you will be living there during the renovation.

Had the home been equipped with a functioning smoke detector system, the family’s chances for survival would have been greatly increased due to the vital moments that an early warning can provide. However, simply having smoke detectors isn’t enough. Annual battery replacement, testing twice a year, and smoke detector replacement every 5-7 years are essential regiments to ensuring your system is consistently functioning as designed. For more guidelines for smoke detector replacement and maintenance, please read our comprehensive smoke detector replacement and maintenance blog.

No matter how new or old your home is, you can never assume your smoke detector system is working correctly. If you have concerns, or your home hasn’t been updated to a modern, interlinked, whole house smoke detector system, now is the time to take action and ensure your family’s safety. Contact ElectricMan Inc. today, by phone at (972) 362-1804, or through our website at, to discuss your options and receive a free quote to bring your home’s smoke detection system up to date. Nothing helps you sleep soundly at night better than the knowledge that your family is safe, and we would like to help you achieve that today.