FREDERICTON (GNB) – New Brunswickers are encouraged to observe Fire Prevention Week, Oct. 8-14. This year’s theme, Every Second Counts – Plan 2 Ways Out!, reminds families of the importance of home-escape planning.
“Your government is focused on keeping New Brunswick families safe and secure,” said Justice and Public Safety Minister Denis Landry. “We are proud to join jurisdictions across Canada in observing Fire Prevention Week. I commend our staff and our provincial partners in their ongoing efforts to educate families and children on fire safety and prevention.”
“In a typical home fire, you may have as little as one to two minutes to safely escape from the time the smoke alarm sounds,ˮ said Provincial Fire Marshal Douglas Browne. “That is why home-escape planning is so important in a fire situation.ˮ
Fire Prevention Week will be officially launched on Tuesday, Oct. 10, with Grade 7 students at Evergreen Park School in Moncton. The event will involve the Office of the Fire Marshal, the Moncton Fire Department and the New Brunswick Association of Fire Chiefs.
“Fire safety is everyone’s responsibility,” said Mike Walton, president of the New Brunswick Association of Fire Chiefs. “The most important part of that responsibility is ensuring you have working smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms.”
While developing and practicing a home-escape plan, people are reminded to:
- Draw a map of your home with all members of your household, marking two exits from each room and a path to the outside from each exit.
- Practice your home fire drill at least twice a year. Conduct one at night and one during the day with everyone in your home, and practice using different ways out.
- Teach children how to escape on their own in case you cannot help them.
- Make sure the number of your home is clearly marked and easy for the fire department to find.
- Close doors behind you as you leave. This may slow the spread of smoke, heat and fire.
- Once you get outside, stay outside. Never go back inside a burning building.
“Early detection is critical,” said Division Chief Charles LeBlanc of the Moncton Fire Department. “Every home must have smoke alarms, and ensure you have two ways out. Every year there are many tragedies that could have been easily avoided.”
The Office of the Fire Marshal will distribute the Fire Safety Gazette to all students from kindergarten to Grade 5. It contains games, puzzles and fire safety information for children and their families. Students may also fill out a ballot from the Gazette before Nov. 15 to win the chance to be named Fire Chief for a Day. The winner will receive a classroom visit from fire safety mascots and guests, a ride on a fire truck and other special prizes.
Fire departments throughout the province will also organize activities to promote fire safety.