WINNIPEG - The Office of the Fire Commissioner and the Manitoba Fire Service is encouraging Manitobans to 'Put a Freeze on Winter Holiday Fires'. The hope is to educate people on the risks from heating, holiday decorations and candles which all contribute to an increased risk of fire during the winter months. The Office of the Fire Commissioner is also reminding families and individuals to help reduce risk from cooking and other hazards, including carbon monoxide and electrical fires.
“It only takes a few minutes to be fire safe,” said Brad Yochim, president, Manitoba Association of Fire Chiefs. “For example, when you walk through your home, make sure the smoke and carbon monoxide alarms work, keep lit candles away from decorations and make sure they are blown out before going to bed.”
This season, pay attention to these safety tips that will help keep everyone safe during the holidays:
be careful with holiday decorations and choose decorations that are flame resistant or flame retardant;
keep children and pets away from lit candles;
keep lit candles away from decorations and other things that can burn;
blow out candles before going to bed;
be aware that some electrical lights are only for indoor or outdoor use, but not both;
replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections;
read manufacturer’s instructions for number of light strands to connect;
test smoke and carbon monoxide alarms;
stay in the kitchen when cooking on a stovetop;
ask smokers to smoke outside and remind them to keep their smoking materials with them so young children do not touch them;
provide large, deep ashtrays for smokers and wet cigarette butts with water before discarding; and
tell guests about the home fire escape plan.
For more tips, videos and other important safety messages, visit:
Manitoba Office of the Fire Commissioner at www.firecomm.gov.mb.ca/safety_holiday.html;or
Manitoba Hydro at www.hydro.mb.ca/safety/carbon_monoxide/.