FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, October 5, 2017
Perth County – October 8 to 14 is Fire Prevention Week across Canada. In Perth County, the Fire Departments and the Perth District Health Unit are partnering to educate residents about how to prevent home fires and to have a plan in place in the event that a home fire occurs.
The theme of Fire Prevention Week this year is: “Every second counts. Plan two ways out.”
“Homes can be completely engulfed in flames in a matter of minutes,” says Rod MacDonald, Fire Prevention Officer of the Stratford Fire Department. “As fires can spread quickly, having a fire escape plan with two ways out can save your life.”
Adrienne Adas, Public Health Promoter at the Perth District Health Unit adds, “Not smoking in your home can save your life too. Smoking inside the home exposes everyone to harmful second-hand smoke and puts them at risk of fire-related injury or death.”
According to the Office of the Fire Marshal & Emergency Management, lit smokers’ materials (cigarettes, pipes) is the ignition source that is involved in the most fatal fires at 25%.
During Fire Prevention Week, the Perth County fire departments will be hosting local activities encouraging residents to plan and test home fire escape routes with two ways out. Contact your local fire department to find out what events may be happening in your community.
A 2014 report from the Centre for Addictions and Mental Health revealed that 89% of adults in Ontario think that smoking should not be allowed in multi-unit dwellings. Currently in Perth County, the Health Unit is aware of at least 55 multi-unit rental buildings that have implemented a smoke-free policy. Given the large percentage of Ontarians wishing to live in smoke-free housing, supply is not meeting demand.
“Not smoking in the home or on balconies is one of the easiest ways to prevent fires in multi-unit or shared housing environments,” says MacDonald. “Having a smoke-free policy creates healthier indoor air and helps prevent residents, their families and pets from being put in unnecessary danger.”
If you are a property owner or landlord and want to make your building smoke-free, contact the health unit for assistance. All property owners/landlords who implement a smoke-free policy in their building will receive a certificate of recognition from the health unit and their local fire department. For more information call 519-271-7600 extension 730 or toll-free at 1-877-271-7348 extension 730, or visit www.pdhu.on.ca.
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