Fire Services remind people to install smoke alarms

How much is a life worth? Aren’t a couple of $10 – $20 smoke alarms installed your residence to save the lives of your family in case of a fire worth it?

Two adults and two children were killed in an Oshawa fire this past week. After investigation it was revealed that no smoke alarms were present.

Locally our fire chiefs are urging residents to invest in their own safety.

Welland’s Fire and Emergency Chief Bryan Kennedy is urging residents to not only install smoke alarms but also come up with an escape plan should there be a fire and practice the escape plan with everyone in the home.

“Fire moves so fast that you may have less than 60 seconds to safely escape a fire, so early warning is crucial to survival,” says Fire Chief Brian Kennedy in a release to the media. “Only working smoke alarms give you that early warning.” Simple smoke and carbon monoxide alarm tips

“Just as important as having working smoke alarms is making sure everyone in your home knows exactly what to do to escape before a fire occurs. Practice a home fire escape plan with everyone in your home,” he said in the release. “It is up to you to make sure these types of tragedies do not happen in City of Welland,” Escape plan steps for home and apartment

Acting St. Catharines Fire and Emergency Chief Jeff McCormick is also urging residents to stay safe over the winter and protect themselves and everyone in their home.

He reiterates the need for a working smoke alarm.

“For residents, having working smoke alarms installed in their homes and knowing an escape plan is a must,” said McCormick in a press release. “An early warning that there’s a fire is crucial to safely escaping. A fire can burn out of control very quickly and you may have less than 60 seconds to get out. Smoke alarms provide that early warning.”

He said that the firefighters in St. Catharines visited 400 homes before Christmas and found that 80% had working smoke alarms that are required by the Ontario Fire Code.

“What we are finding is that one-in-five homes in St. Catharines are not protected with the early warning system they need,” McCormick said. “Working smoke alarms are proven to save lives and are required by law.

He also stressed the need for people to have an escape plan.

“Residents should develop and practise an escape plan with two ways out of every room before a fire happens,” he said.

In the event of a real fire he said: “Once outside, call 9-1-1 and stay out. Never re-enter a burning building.”

With the approaching cold weather and snow for the weekend, McCormick offers the following tips to help stay safe:

  • Don’t use barbecues, propane heaters or other exterior-type fuel fired appliances to warm your home;
  • Never use generators or fuel-powered space heaters, such as kerosene or propane, indoors.
  • Ensure space heaters have proper ventilation, as applicable, and enough clearance from combustibles;
  • Avoid overloading electrical systems;
  • Check on neighbours who may be vulnerable;
  • Keep fire hydrants on your property free of snow and ice.

 

 

 


 

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