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SMOKE ALARMS

 

Smoke alarms save lives by warning you about a fire in your home while there is still time to escape. Smoke alarms must be installed on every floor of your home including the basement, outside of all sleeping areas and now it is recommended in every bedroom. Test your smoke alarms once a month and have the batteries replaced at least once a year. 

 

If you live in a rental home or apartment, it is the responsibility of the owner or landlord to provide and install smoke alarms and provide you batteries. If your landlord will not install a smoke alarm for you, please call our Fire Prevention Division at (204) 729-2409 and we can help.

 

PLAN YOUR ESCAPE

 

Do you know what to do if a fire occurs in your home? Prepare a family fire escape plan.

Be sure to:

  • Include all family members in the planning of your escape plan.
  • Draw a floor plan of your home, marking two ways out of every room.
  • Go over the plan with everyone in your family so they understand how to escape if there is a fire.
  • Select a meeting place outside of your home where all family members will meet after they have escaped.
  • Call 9-1-1 from a safe location (i.e. cell phone or neighbour’s house).
  • Do not go back into your home for any reason. Once you are out – STAY OUT!
  • Practice your home fire escape plan by holding a fire drill twice a year. Once in Summer and Winter

 

CRAWL LOW IN SMOKE

 

In a fire, smoke and heat rise. Cleaner and cooler air is near the floor. Always try a second way out if you encounter smoke while escaping but if you have to escape through the smoke, crawl on your hands and knees.

 

SMOKING

 

Careless smoking is a major cause of house fires.

  • Never smoke when you are in bed.
  • Use a large, deep, glass or metal ashtray.
  • Disposal of ashes / butts must involve the materials coming in contact with water prior to placing in the garbage.
  • Always check your seat cushions and floors for cigarette butts prior to leaving the house or going to bed.
  • Keep matches and lighters out of the reach of children.

 

CANDLES

 

Never leave a candle unattended for any reason. If you are leaving the room, extinguish the candle. Always place the candle on a solid, level surface, away from windows and all combustible materials including drapes and curtains. Keep children and pets away from lit candles as candles can be easily knocked over. Always use the proper type of holder for the candle and never carry it while it is a lit.

 

COOKING

 

Always stay in the kitchen while you are cooking. Never leave cooking unattended and if you must leave the kitchen, turn off the stove! Cooking fires are easily preventable if you follow these fire safety tips:

  • Wear clothes with short or tight fitting sleeves while you cook to avoid catching your clothes on fire.
  • Always keep a tight-fitting lid and an oven mitt near the stove when you are cooking and if the pot or pan catches fire, slide the lid over it and turn off the stove. Do not try and lift or move it.
  • Unplug kettles, frying pans and other appliances when not in use.
  • Turn pot handles inward where you can’t bump them and children can’t grab them.

 

MATCHES AND LIGHTERS

 

Keep matches and lighters away from children. Lock them up in a cupboard that is high and out of reach. Teach children that when they find matches or lighters they should tell an adult, because they are tools and not toys.

 

ELECTRICAL SAFETY

 

Know the warning signs that indicate a problem in your electrical system; such as flickering lights, smoke or a strange odour coming from appliances, discolouration around the plug-in, blown fuses or circuit breakers that trip. Check any exposed wiring and make sure it is not cracked or frayed. All electrical repairs shall be done by a qualified electrician.

 

EMERGENCY PROCEDURES IN APARTMENT BUILDINGS

 

All apartment buildings shall have an approved Fire Safety Plan posted throughout the building. Read this plan and take the time to sit down with your family members to discuss what to do when there is a fire in your apartment unit or in the building. The Fire Safety Plan will provide you all the necessary information needed to safely escape or what to do if you’re trapped.

 

IF THE FIRE IS IN YOUR APARTMENT

 

  • Alert everyone and leave your apartment immediately, don’t stop to collect valuables!  Do not take time to look for items.
  • Close the apartment door, leaving it unlocked.
  • Sound the building’s fire alarm system in the hallway, if it is so equipped.
  • On your way out, if safe to do so, knock on doors to alert other occupants.
  • Leave your floor by the nearest exit or stairs ensuring that all doors close behind you to prevent or slow the spread of smoke, heat, and fire.
  • Call 9-1-1 from a safe location; giving your name, address, apartment number, and details about the fire when you last saw it.
  • Never use the building elevators.
  • Do not go back into the building until you are told that it is safe to do so by Brandon Fire and Emergency Services personnel or building representatives.

 

IF YOU ARE TRAPPED IN YOUR APARTMENT

 

If you hear the building’s fire alarm system, we recommend that you and your family consider leaving the building by the nearest safe exit or stairwell. If the corridors or stairwells cannot be used due to excessive smoke, heat, or fire, you should remain in your apartment or take refuge in a neighbour’s apartment.

  • Close the apartment door. Use wet towels, sheets, or duct tape to seal all openings around the door. If smoke begins coming in ventilation outlets, such as in the bathroom or kitchen, seal them as well.

  • Move to the balcony or the most protected room, opening windows to provide you with fresh air. We recommend that you do not break the window. Be prepared to close the window if smoke starts to enter the room from the outside.

  • If the smoke enters the room, stay low. Remember that heat and smoke rise.

  • Call 9-1-1 and tell them where you are and your need for rescue.

  • Listen for instructions on the building’s voice communication system; if the building is so equipped.

  • Signal your position by waving a white sheet or similar item.

  • Remain calm and wait to be rescued.

 

ROOMING HOMES

 

A rooming home is a type of residential occupancy in which there may be lodgers living in a home in which a washroom and or kitchen is shared with others. If you live in this type of a home, there are fire regulations designed to keep you safe. The following questions will help determine if your home is fire safe:

  • Is there a smoke alarm in the hallway and possibly one in your room?
  • Do the smoke alarms work?
  • Is there a fire extinguisher in the hallway?
  • Is the door to your room a solid wood door and does it close properly?
  • Is there a Fire Safety Plan posted in the building and has it been explained to you?
  • Are there a minimum of two exits from every floor level?

 

 

If you answered NO to any of these questions, then your home may not be in compliance with fire regulations. The building owner is required by law to comply with all fire safety regulations. Contact the Fire Prevention Division at (204) 729-2409 and ask for an Inspector.

 

FIRE SAFETY QUESTIONS

 

If you have any concerns or questions regarding fire safety in your home, contact Brandon Fire and Emergency Services–Fire Prevention Division at (204) 729-2409 weekdays between 8:00am and 4:30pm. Additional information can also be found on various parts of our website.

 

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