Oakville Fire reminds residents: change your clock, change your battery

Monday, October 28, 2013 – for immediate release

Oakville Fire reminds residents: change your clock, change your battery

Nearly half of all fatal fires in Ontario occur because there are no working smoke alarms in the home. With daylight savings ending on Sunday, November 2, 2013, the Oakville Fire department reminds residents to replace the batteries in their smoke and carbon monoxide alarms when they change their clocks.

“The majority of fire deaths happen at night when everyone is sleeping,” said Oakville Fire Chief Lee Grant. “In most cases, you have as little as one minute to escape a fire so timing is critical. Use your extra hour this weekend to replace the batteries in your smoke alarms and develop a home fire escape plan.”

It is the law in Ontario to have working smoke alarms on every storey of your home and outside each sleeping area. For added protection, the Oakville Fire department encourages the installation of smoke alarms inside all bedrooms. Property owners are also reminded to replace smoke alarms every 10 years to ensure they work correctly.

The most commonly cited cause of non-working smoke alarms is worn or missing batteries. Tampering with or removing batteries from a smoke alarm is illegal. Failure to comply with the Fire Code smoke alarm requirements can result in a ticket of $235 or fines of up to $50,000.

Residents are encouraged to follow these simple steps for home fire escape planning:

Ensure all smoke alarms are installed properly and are in working order;
Develop a home fire escape plan and practice it often;
Ensure that all exits are unobstructed and easy to access;
Practice two ways out of each room, if possible;
Determine who will be responsible for helping young children, older adults or others requiring assistance;
Determine a meeting place outside, such as a tree or a lamp post, where everyone can be accounted for;
If there’s smoke, get low and go under the smoke to the closest safe exit;
Call 9-1-1 from outside the home from a cell phone or neighbouring home;
Once out, stay out! Never re-enter a burning building.

To learn more about the maintenance of smoke alarms and home fire safety, visit the fire safety page.

Media contact:

Michael Harrison
Public Education Officer
Oakville Fire Department
905-845-6601, ext. 3602

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Oakville Fire reminds residents: change your clock, change your battery