Members of the Eckville Fire Department let kids try their hand at the fire hose during Canada Day celebrations on July 1. File photo

Fire Prevention Week back in Eckville

Eckville Fire Chief shares his advice for how to stay safe during home fires.

Eckville Fire Chief Stuart Carde is reminding residents about Fire Prevention Week.

The Eckville Fire Department teamed up with the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) for this year’s Fire Prevention Week running Oct. 6-12.

The NFPA has been the official sponsor of Fire Prevention Week for more than 90 years and the campaign works to educate everyone about the small, but important, actions they can take to keep themselves and those around them safe.

In Canada most fire deaths happen in the home with fire departments responding to approximately 25,600 structure fire per year, according to the NFPA, adding in 2015 these types of fires caused more than 1,400 injuries and almost 200 deaths.

“Probably one of the bigger causes of fires in the home are cooking fires, so remember not to leave your stoves unattended when you’re cooking,” said Fire Chief Stuart Carde.

Carde also said smoking materials, such as butts and ashtrays, are extinguished as they also pose a concern.

The theme for Fire Prevention Week this year is “Not Every Hero Wears a Cape. Plan and Practise Your Escape!”

Lorraine Carli, NFPA’s vice president of outreach and advocacy, says residents have as little as one to two minutes to make a safe escape in a typical home fire.

Fire Chief Carde says households should practice their escape once a year.

“The age and the mentality of the children changes over that time and it just refreshes their memory of what they should do,” explained Carde.

In the event of a move, he advises making a new plan and practising it after moving in.

On top of knowing your escape route he added households should test their fire alarms every month, recommending the batteries be changed when the time changes during Daylight Savings Time.

Other tips from Carde include sleeping with the bedroom door closed to stop the smoke and heat in event of a fire, as well as ensuring each bedroom has its own smoke detector.

“I know it seems like everything’s repetitious, but it’s all important and [it’s] just to remind your families to be prepared and know what to do,” said Carde.

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