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Fire and Wildfire Protection

Wildfires and fires are a real and present danger. Do what you can to help mitigate risk and protect your family, home and business.

Extinguish home fire risks

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Fire prevention is not something that requires deep pockets or a lot of time. Take action and follow common-sense precautions such as:

  • frequently inspecting and clean chimney flues, particularly if you burn oil, coal or wood

  • using a fireplace screen to prevent sparks from hitting the floor and rugs

  • not installing a bulb with a higher wattage than indicated on the fixture

  • installing a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) for any outlet near a sink or source of water

  • keeping your attic tidy and free of clutter that could fuel a fire and limit access for firefighters

  • installing smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors outside bedrooms and on each floor of your home. Check batteries every spring and fall

  • keeping an A-B-C type fire extinguisher in your kitchen

  • considering investing in a grounded lightning rod if your home is built on an elevated or exposed site

  • ensuring a fire-resistant, self-closing door separates your living area from your garage

  • ensuring light fixtures in your garage are properly wired and controlled by a switch

  • storing fuels, solvents, waste or other flammable materials in ventilated areas away from your furnace or garage

  • ensuring your fuses and circuit breakers work properly. Have a licensed electrician periodically inspect electrical connections if your home has aluminum wiring.

  • knowing how to shut the main electrical breaker for your home.

  • having your heating boiler or furnace inspected and cleaned frequently. Don’t block the air vent or damper. If you have an oil tank, get it periodically inspected

  • removing excess lint from your clothes dryer lint trap and keep the exhaust vent clean

  • avoiding excessive use of extension cords – never run cords under rugs or carpets

  • keeping pot handles turned inward when cooking, remove greasy build-up from the range hood and filters

  • never leaving lighted candles unattended or burning overnight

  • never leaving a clothing iron or hair straightener unattended

  • if you smoke, try do so outside and away from the home and dispose of ashes and butts safely. Securely store matches and lighters away from children

  • consider investing in a grounded lightning rod if your home is built on an elevated or exposed site

  • if you live in wildfire areas, don’t let dry leaves and debris collect on wood decks, near outside walls of your home, particularly if you have wood or vinyl siding

Protect your home from wildfire risks

Wildfires burn millions of hectares of forest every year in Canada. Here are some key areas you should pay attention to in order to reduce the risk of wildfire damage to your home.

  • Cut and water grass within 10 metres of your home and other structures on your property

  • Use only fire-retardant roofing rated Class A, B or C and use first resistant exterior siding

  • Enclose undersides of wood balconies, decks and crawlspaces with flame resistant materials

  • Store firewood and propane tanks at least 100 metres from your home and other structures on your property

  • Enclose all eaves and screen all vents, including soffits

  • Thin trees (with three to six metres between crowns) for at least 30 metres from your home

  • Install spark arrestor screens on chimneys

Source: Institute for Catastrophic Loss Prevention