Fire Safety Tips during COVID-19 from Port Hope Fire and Emergency Services

During these difficult times, when public officials are asking us to stay at home, the potential for a home fire is greater than before. Most fires in Ontario occur in our homes, the place where most people feel the safest. Port Hope Fire and Emergency Services would like to remind everyone of some fire safety measures that we all can take to reduce the risks in our homes and keep ourselves and our families safe from fire.

Remember to test your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms to ensure that you can hear them and that they are working

  • Push the test button and make sure they sound. Make sure everyone knows the difference between the sound of the smoke alarm and the sound of the carbon monoxide alarm.
  • If you haven’t done so recently, install fresh batteries in your alarms if they use regular alkaline batteries to function.
  • If you have children at home, consider involving them in the testing procedure.

Design or review your home fire escape plan with your family

  • Remember to know two ways out of every room, wherever possible and one family meeting place outdoors.
  • Discuss who will be responsible for anyone who cannot self-evacuate (the very young, persons with mobility issues, etc.).
  • Once you have designed your plan, be sure to put it into practice. This will get everyone up and moving and outside for a little fresh air. It will also confirm that your plan worked! What might look good on paper, may not always work in practice.

If you are cooking, be sure to stay in the kitchen

  • With all that is happening right now, it is very easy to get distracted, but do not leave your cooking unattended.
  • If you do have a fire in a pot or pan on the stovetop, remember to put a lid on it and turn off the heat when it is safe to do so.
  • Be sure to call 9-1-1 and have fire fighters attend to check it out.
  • There have been no changes in our emergency response procedures to come and help you out if help is needed.

When charging a device, be sure it is done so on a hard surface 

  • Batteries can become hot during the charging process, so charging on a soft surface such as a bed or couch does not allow the batteries to get enough air to keep them from overheating. This could lead to fire occurring.

We realize these are extremely challenging times and we want everyone to be safe at home. These simple safety tips can help you, your family and our firefighters.

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