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Not Every Hero Wears a Cape. Plan and Practice Your Escape!

HAMILTON, ON - Fire Chief David Cunliffe is urging families in Hamilton to practise their home fire escape as part of Fire Prevention Week.

Fire Prevention Week runs from October 6-12, 2019. This year’s theme is “Not Every Hero Wears a Cape. Plan and Practice Your Escape!” When the smoke alarm sounds, everyone must know where to go – that’s why it is so important for everyone to have working smoke alarms and to develop and practise a home fire escape plan.

“In a fire, you may have only seconds to safely escape your home. Practise your home fire escape plan and make sure everyone can get out safely. Our dedicated staff work extremely hard to educate our residents about fire safety and to reduce risk for a healthier and safer community.” - David R. (Dave) Cunliffe, Fire Chief, Hamilton Fire Department

Fire and smoke can spread quickly, so be prepared in advance with these simple steps for home fire escape planning:

Assess the needs of everyone in your home
  • Identify anyone who requires assistance to get out of the home safely, such as small children or older adults.
Make sure that you have working smoke alarms on every storey of the home and outside all sleeping areas
  • Make sure everyone in the home knows the sound of the smoke alarm.
Identify all possible exits (doors and windows) and make sure they work
  • Know two ways out of all areas, if possible.
Everyone must know what to do when the smoke alarm sounds
  • Assign someone to help those who need assistance.
  • Identify a safe meeting place outside.
  • Call the fire department from a neighbour’s home or cell phone.
Practice your home fire escape plan
  • Have everyone participate.
  • Make changes to your plan if necessary.

The Hamilton Fire Department will be holding several activities and events throughout Fire Prevention Week to generate awareness about the importance of fire safety. The following are some of the planned activities:

  • October 10, 2019: Fire Prevention staff will be hosting a Fire Prevention Week Information Booth at the Lime Ridge Mall from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • October 14, 2019: Join us for an open house event at all 26 of our Fire Stations. The open house will take place from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Residents will have an opportunity to tour their local fire station, view the fire trucks and speak to fire-fighters about fire safety. Please bring a non-perishable food donation for our community food drive. 

Quick facts

  • Careless smoking and unattended cooking are leading causes of residential fires.
  • In 2018, 78.4% of all structure fires occurred in residential properties.
  • 221 residential structure fires occurred in 2018.
  • The Home Fire Safety Education Program has visited 28,218 homes, replaced 540 batteries and installed 2,520 smoke alarms since it began in May 2017.

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