Fire Chief Urges Residents to Keep Fire Safety Top of Mind

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Fire Fatalities Across the Province Increase by 65% Since Last Year

Fire Chief Urges Residents to Keep Fire Safety Top of Mind

Elizabethtown-Kitley Township– May 5th, 2020. Since January 1, fire fatalities across Ontario increased by 65%, with 17 Ontarians dying in fires in March alone. Elizabethtown-Kitley Fire Chief Jim Donovan wants to remind everyone how important it is to keep fire safety top of mind.

“I urge you to be vigilant in preventing fires, especially now with so many people at home practicing physical distancing because of COVID-19.  It’s just as important that you test your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms and practice a home fire escape plan.”

Between January 1 and May 4, 2019, there were 31 fire fatalities in Ontario. This year for the same, period there has been 51 fire fatalities.  “Only you can make sure these types of tragedies do not happen, “You need to do everything you can to prevent a fire in your home.”

There are simple things that can be done to ensure everyone knows what to do if a fire starts.

Reduce fire risks in your home:

  • Always stay in the kitchen when cooking. Unattended cooking is a leading cause of fires.
  • Keep a close eye on anyone drinking alcohol and attempting to cook or smoke.
  • Encourage smokers to smoke outside the home and outside garage. Thoroughly extinguish all smoking materials in water or sand.
  • Always blow out candles before leaving the room.
  • Avoid overloading electrical outlets. Extension cords should be used only as a temporary connection. Avoid running cords under rugs, which can damage cords and cause a fire.
  • Ensure items that can burn are at least one metre away from space heaters.
  • Do not attempt to decontaminate face masks by heating in a microwave. Various fabric or metal components can overheat or create sparks and cause a fire.

Make sure your alarms work:

  • Test smoke and carbon monoxide alarms monthly by pressing the test button. Only working alarms can give you the early warning you need to safely escape your home.

Practice your home fire escape plan:

  • Ensure everyone knows two ways out of each room, if possible. 
  • All exits must be unobstructed and easy to use. 
  • Determine who is responsible for helping children, older adults and anyone who needs assistance to escape.
  • Choose a meeting place, such as a tree or lamp post, where all can be accounted for. 
  • Call the fire department from outside the home, from a cell phone or a neighbour’s home.
  • Once out, stay out. Never re-enter a burning building.

For more information, contact:

Elizabethtown-Kitley Fire Department at 613-498-2460   email:  

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Township of Elizabethtown-Kitley, 6544 New Dublin Rd, RR 2  Addison, ON, K0E 1A0
Tel. 613-345-7480 or 1-800-492-3175, Fax. 613-345-7235, Email:
Office Hours: Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m.-4:00 p.m.

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