Public Advisory: Winter Safety


The Department of Municipal Affairs and Environment, Fire and Emergency Services would like to advise the public of some winter safety tips for residents and business owners.

During and after snowfall, ensure the exhaust vents for dryers, furnaces, fireplaces and air exchangers are clear;

  • All windows and doors should be cleared of snow as these are escape routes in case of a fire;

  • Never try to thaw frozen pipes with a blow torch, welding machine or open flame;

  • Only use hot water or a certified device such as a handheld dryer for thawing;

  • Keep portable generators outside, away from windows, and as far away as possible from your house;

  • Never use a barbecue or other fuel-burning appliance inside a home, garage or vehicle as carbon monoxide can build up in these appliances which can lead to serious injury or death;

  • Install a carbon monoxide detector and follow the manufacturer’s instructions on how to install, test and use the detector; and

  • Plug only one heat-producing appliance (such as a space heater) into an electrical outlet at a time.

Does the public use your building?

  • All exits of a business, municipal building and recreation facility must be accessible and free of ice and snow; and

  • All emergency exits must open freely with a path cleared to an open space such as a road or parking lot.

Did you know?

  • Half of all home heating fires occur in the months of December, January and February;

  • Heating equipment is involved in one in every six reported home fires and one in every five home deaths; and

  • Keep anything that can burn at least three feet from any heat source like fireplaces, wood stoves, radiators, or space heaters.


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