To reduce fire risk during a power outage, the Office of the Fire Marshal offers the following safety tips
- Electrically-connected smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms will not work when the power is out unless they have battery back-ups. Make sure your home has battery-operated smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms.
- Everyone should know how to get out immediately if there is a fire. Plan and practice your escape plan before emergencies happen.
- Use flashlights or battery-operated lanterns instead of candles or hurricane lamps. If using candles, place them in a secure holder and cover them with a glass chimney, away from children and pets.
- Propane and charcoal barbecues are for outdoor use only. Do not bring them inside.
- Purchase generators with recognized approval labels. Make sure the unit has proper connection receptacles and circuit breakers.
- Portable generators should only be used outdoors and carefully located to ensure that exhaust fumes do not enter the home. Allow the generator to cool before refuelling. Refuel the generator outside, following the manufacturer’s instructions. Store fuel for the generator in approved containers, outside the home.
- Use only portable space heaters that have been designed for indoor use and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Provide adequate ventilation by opening a window slightly while the heater is in use. Before refuelling, turn off the heater, wait for it to cool and take the heater outside to refuel.
- Make sure electric stove elements and small appliances are OFF or unplugged to prevent fires from occurring when the electricity is restored.
- Cordless phones will not work when the power is out, so it is recommended to have at least one phone that does not require electricity to operate.
- Use extreme caution during flood emergencies and power outages. Electrical equipment impacted by flood water can be extremely dangerous. For more important information about electrical safety during floods, please visit the Electrical Safety Authority’s website: http://www.esasafe.com/
- Further information on emergency preparedness can be found at http://www.emergencymanagementontario.ca/english/home.html.
*Tips courtesy of the Ontario Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services