The following tips have been provided by Dino Pangrazzi, a volunteer with the Tiny Township Fire Department and resident of the Farlain Lake community,with the approval of the Fire Chief.
Cottage Fire Safety Tips:
It’s the law for all Ontario homes and cottages to have working smoke alarms on every storey and outside all sleeping areas.Like many districts, Tiny has implemented a zero tolerance policy in this regard.Non-compliance could result in fines.If you are in a position to do so, install hard-wired alarms.If not, battery-operated models are quite acceptable. When purchasing smoke alarms, be sure to select a ULC-listed model with a hush-button feature. It allows you to silence false alarms easily without disabling the alarm or removing the battery.
- Test smoke alarms at least monthly or each time you return to the cottage.Keep a new smoke alarm and extra batteries on hand, and replace your batteries every spring.
- Install separate carbon monoxide alarms near fuel-burning appliances.
- Develop and practice a home fire escape plan to ensure everyone knows what to do if the smoke alarm sounds.
- Clean barbecues before using them. Keep an eye on lit barbecues and ensure all combustibles, as well as children and pets are kept well away from them.
- Remember to have a flashlight with extra batteries on hand.
- Check heating appliances and chimneys before using them. Have your chimney cleaned at least once a year, depending on the frequency of use.
- Please remember to purchase your Fire Permit to enjoy outside fires. Check with the Township office every time you are considering an outdoor fire to determine whether open air burning is permitted. You may recall that we were on a Fire Ban for most of last summer. The Township office number is 705-526-4204. Be sure any visitors using your cottage also know this number. A recording regarding possible Fire Bans is always available after hours.If open burning is allowed, fires should be built on bare soil contained in a pit.Remove leaves and twigs from around the fire to keep it from spreading. Always keep a bucket of water, sand, or shovel close by and supervise the fire at all times.In our area, the diameter of an outside fire must not exceed one meter.Never leave the fire unattended and be absolutely sure to fully extinguish your fire before returning indoors! To avoid unnecessary fines, please comply with all burning conditions that are listed on the burn permit. These permits are available at a number of locations in Tiny, and the Township office can provide the details.
- Consider keeping all smoking to outside areas. Keep a large can with water nearby so butts can be safely discarded.Drink responsibly. Tobacco use and excessive alcohol consumption are contributing factors in many fires and can lead to serious injuries.
- Burn candles in sturdy candleholders that will not tip and are covered with a glass shade. When you go out, blow out!
Firework Safety Tips:
- If you choose to have family fireworks on your property, appoint a responsible person to be in charge.Only adults who are aware of the hazards and essential safety precautions should handle and discharge fireworks.
- Carefully read and follow the label directions on fireworks packaging.
- Always keep a pail of water close by when discharging fireworks.
- Discharge fireworks well away from combustible materials like buildings, trees and dry grass.
- Keep onlookers at a safe distance, upwind from the area where fireworks are discharged.
- Light only one firework at a time and only when they are on the ground. Never light a firework in your hand or re-light duds.For dud fireworks, soak them in a bucket of water for a minimum of 30 minutes.
- Discharge fireworks only if wind conditions do not create a safety hazard.
- Keep sparklers away from small children. Sparklers burn extremely hot and can ignite clothing, cause eye injuries and result in severe burns. As the sparkler wire remains hot for some minutes after burnout, it should be immediately soaked in water to avoid injury.
- If someone gets burned, run cool water over the wound for three to five minutes and seek medical attention, if necessary.
- All fireworks should be disposed of in a metal container.
Power Outage Safety Tips:
To reduce fire risk during a power outage, the Office of the Fire Marshal recommends following these tips:
- Electrically connected smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms will not work when the power is out.Have battery-operated systems as a back up to provide early warning of any issues.
- During a power outage, make sure electric stove elements, TVs, computers, and small appliances are OFF or unplugged to prevent fires from starting when the electricity is restored.
- Cordless phones will not work when the power is out; so be sure to have a back up.
- Use flashlights or battery-operated lanterns instead of candles or hurricane lamps. If using candles, place them in a secure holder and cover them with a glass chimney.
- Propane and charcoal barbecues are for outdoor use only. Do not bring them inside.
- Only use portable space heaters that have been designed for indoor use and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Provide adequate ventilation by opening a window slightly while in use. Before re-fueling, turn off the heater, wait for it to cool, and take the heater outside to refuel.
- Purchase generators with recognized approval labels. Make sure the unit has proper connection receptacles and circuit breakers.
- Portable generators should only be used outdoors and carefully located to ensure that exhaust fumes do not enter the home.Allow the generator to cool before re-fueling and follow the manufacturer’s instructions to do so.
- Store fuel for the generator in approved containers, outside the home.
Carbon Monoxide Alarms Now Required by Law
As a result of recent amendments to the Ontario Fire Code, carbon monoxide alarms are now required in residential dwelling units that have fuel burning appliances or attached garages. An alarm should be installed adjacent to each sleeping area, which means the hallway serving or area outside the sleeping area. For added protection, a carbon monoxide alarm should be installed on every story of the home according to the manufacturer's instructions. Fines may be imposed for each missing alarm.