Safety

  • SAFETY
  • FIRE EXTINGUISHERS
  • SMOKE ALARMS
  • FIRE ESCAPE PLAN
  • HOME SAFETY
  • FARM SAFETY
  • OFFICE SAFETY
  • SIGNS OF HEART ATTACK

The police, firefighters, or ambulance crew need to know where you are to provide help for the emergency. It’s important to make sure you are safe before you call 911. If your home is on fire, for instance, leave the house before calling 911. You can always call from someone else’s house or from a cell phone.

FIRE EXTINGUISHERS

READ THE INSTRUCTIONS ON YOUR EXTINGUISHER FOR PROPER USE.

Create a picture in your mind that will reflect the instructions on the extinguisher: if there’s a fire, get everyone

outside and ask a member of your family to call the fire department from a neighbour’s house. Only then should

you permit yourself to fight a small fire. If the fire becomes large, get out. Close doors behind you to slow the

spread of the fire.

THE ABCD’S OF PORTABLE FIRE EXTINGUISHERS:

A fire extinguisher is a storage container for an agent like water or chemicals. It is designed to put out a small fire,

not a large one. Extinguishers are labelled ABC or D. Ensure you use the right extinguisher for the appropriate

type of fire.

1. Ordinary Combustibles – Fires started with paper, wood, drapes and upholstery require a Class A type extinguisher.

2. Flammable and Combustible Liquids – Fires originating from fuel oil, gasoline, paint, grease in a frying pan, solvents and other flammable liquids require a Class B type extinguisher.

3. Electrical Equipment – Fires started with wiring, overheated fuse boxes, conductors, and other electrical sources require a Class C type extinguisher.

4. Metals – Certain metals such as magnesium and sodium require a special dry powder Class D type extinguisher.

A multi-purpose dry chemical labelled ABC puts out most types of fires: wood, paper, cloth, flammable liquids and electrical fires. If you intend to buy more than one, you may want to purchase a BC for the kitchen, an A for the living room and an ABC for the basement and garage.

BUYING AND MAINTAINING AN EXTINGUISHER:

1. Extinguishers come in a dry chemical, foam, carbon dioxide, water, or Halon form. Whatever type you buy, it should be labelled by a nationally recognized testing laboratory.

2. The higher the number rating on the extinguisher, the more fire it puts out. High rated extinguishers are often (not always) the heavier models. Ensure you can hold and operate the one you buy comfortably.

3. Ask your dealer how to have your extinguisher serviced and inspected. Recharge it after ANY use. A partially used extinguisher might as well be empty.

4. Extinguishers should be installed near an escape route and away from potential fire hazards.

LEARN HOW TO P-A-S-S-

1. Pull the pin. Some units require the releasing of a lock latch, pressing a puncture lever, inversion or other motion.

2. Aim the extinguisher nozzle (horn) at the base of the fire.

3. Squeeze or press the handle.

4. Sweep from side-to-side at the base of the fire and discharge the contents of the extinguisher.

Foam and water extinguishers require slightly different use. Read the instructions.

Fire Prevention Canada

LOCATING/INSTALLING SMOKE ALARMS:

  • Read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.
  • For best performance, an alarm should be mounted on the ceiling in or near the centre of the room, hall or stairway, and at the head of each stairway leading to an occupied area.
  • Optimum location for wall mounts is at least 15 cm (6 inches) from the ceiling but not more than 30 cm (19 inches) from it.
  • Avoid installing where the temperature is less than 5oC (41oF) or exceeds 48oC (119oF).
  • Keep alarms away from doors and windows.
  • Never locate an alarm in front of an air register, fans or vents.
  • Keep alarms at least 60 cm (2 feet) from any corner.
  • Do not recess smoke alarms in walls or ceilings!
  • Smoke alarms in rooms with ceiling slopes greater than 30 cm (one foot) rise per 2.4 m (eight feet) horizontally should be located on the high side of the room.
  • Avoid locating an alarm at the peak of an “A” frame type ceiling.
  • Never paint a smoke alarm.
  • Keep alarms 60 to 90 cm (two to three feet) away from light fixtures.

WHEN HAVING AN ALARM CONNECTED INTO THE ELECTRICAL WIRING SYSTEM OF A HOUSE YOU SHOULD:

  • Use a qualified electrical contractor.
  • Never install the alarm in the electrical circuit except at the main panel. Alarms must also never be installed in a circuit connected to an on/off switch.
  • Check the alarm when installation is complete.

MARK YOUR CALENDAR: TESTING AND CLEANING:

Test your smoke alarm monthly and clean it every 6 months. Mark it on your calendar so that you don’t forget. Things to remember when testing your smoke alarm:

  • Ensure that power is being transmitted to the alarm and that it will activate in the presence of smoke.
  • Test your smoke alarm by pressing the test button.
  • Even alarms with a pilot light that indicate power is being transmitted, should be tested regularly.
  • Battery-operated smoke alarms will warn you when batteries need replacing. Despite this, make it a habit to change the batteries yearly.
  • When you’ve been away from home for a few days, check your alarm on your return to ensure it is working properly.
  • Remember, your smoke alarm can’t protect you if the batteries have been removed or a plug has been disconnected.
  • The lifespan of a typical smoke alarm is about 10 years, but some models last as little as 5 years.
  • To clean the alarm, open the cover and gently vacuum the interior of it. Frequently, the alarm will sound while the unit is being cleaned.                   

- Fire Prevention Canada 

FIRE ESCAPE PLAN

AT WORK:

Do you know

  • Your Fire Department’s emergency number?
  • Your fire escape plan?
  • Your designated meeting place in the event of a fire?
  • Who your floor fire emergency officer is?
  • The location of the nearest fire extinguisher?
  • The location of the nearest fire alarm station?
  • The location of the nearest two exits?
  • Who needs assistance in the event of an emergency

IF YOU DON’T KNOW, FIND OUT NOW!

  • Mobility-impaired? Have you informed your floor fire emergency officer?
  • Read the posted fire emergency instructions.
  • Report all fire hazards.
  • When the fire alarm sounds follow the instructions as per the fire emergency plan.

AT HOME

Statistics reveal that 78 percent of deaths from fire occur in the home, with most of the fatalities taking place between 2 am and 4 am, while occupants are asleep. That is why it is critical to develop an escape plan, because one needs to react quickly since with a fire:

  • The smoke is black and very thick, making it impossible to see.
  • There is no time for indecision; an entire home can be engulfed within five minutes.
  • Most people are killed by smoke inhalation, not the flame of the fire.
  • The heat of the fire is extremely intense and can kill you instantly.

DEVELOP AND PRACTICE A FIRE ESCAPE PLAN

  • Install smoke alarms on every level. Keep smoke alarms clean and dust-free, checking them monthly.
  • Replace batteries yearly and alarms every 10 years.
  • In order to be able to react quickly to fire, draw a floor plan of your home showing all possible exits from each room.
  • Where possible, plan two exits: a main route and an alternate route from each room.
  • Since the majority of fire deaths occur while you are sleeping, you should practice your plan at night as well, getting down on your hands and knees with a flashlight while crawling to safety.
  • Heavy smoke impairs breathing, which is why staying close to the floor increases chances of escape.
  • Heat and smoke rise – the air is more breathable and cooler close to the floor.
  • Make certain that everyone understands that if they hear the smoke alarm, or someone shouting “FIRE”, they should immediately evacuate the home.
  • Designate a meeting place outside your home in the event of a fire.
  • Small children unable to escape should be taught to open their windows and wave an article of clothing to attract attention. Instruct them to wait at the window until someone comes and to never hide from the fire in places like under a bed or in a closet.
  • Discuss with a fire department official whether an escape ladder would be appropriate to install.
  • Sleep with doors closed. If children are frightened, parents can close doors after the children fall asleep and use a room monitor to hear them during the night.
  • If awakened by a smoke alarm or a fire, instruct family members to feel the door for heat and check air at the bottom. If you don’t smell smoke and the air is cool, kneel and open the door slowly, turning your face away from the opening. If smoke is present or the door is hot, use another exit.
  • Purchase an A-B-C fire extinguisher, whose rating is based on the fuel: ‘A’ originates from a wood or paper fire, ‘B’ is caused by flammable liquids and ‘C’ is an electrical fire. Learn how to use this fire extinguisher by remembering the acronym PASS. Pull the pin, Aim the extinguisher, Squeeze or press the handle and Sweep side-to-side at the base of the fire.
  • If you live in an apartment building, develop your escape plan taking into account fire escape procedures provided by building management.
  • Make sure your babysitter understands your fire escape plan.
  • Practice Your Escape Plan: regular practice is essential so that every family member knows what to do and will be able to react quickly.
  • If anyone in your home is unable to evacuate without assistance, assign someone to assist them.
  • Ensure that everyone in your home knows not to re-enter.
  • Call the Fire Department from a neighbour’s home.               

 Fire Prevention Canada

HOME SAFETY

KITCHEN:

  • Avoid loose long sleeves when cooking.
  • Check kettles and toasters for damaged electrical cords and thermostats.
  • Use appliances that have an automatic shut-off.
  • Keep a timer handy to remind you when the oven and burners should be switched off.
  • If you take medication that causes drowsiness, do not use cooking appliances.
  • Use a temperature-controlled electric skillet or deep-fryer for frying.
  • Never leave your cooking unattended.
  • Use appropriate cooking appliances and keep them clean.
  • Keep a pot cover nearby to “put a lid on it” in the event of a fire.

LIVING ROOM:

  • Fireplace: always use a fire screen, ensuring it is the appropriate size for the fireplace opening.
  • Power bars should not be used to overload electrical outlets. Do not use extension cords in the place of additional outlets.
  • Smokers should check furniture for fallen cigarettes or embers, which can smoulder undetected for hour before bursting into flames.
  • Ensure careful use of smoking materials and extinguish in water before disposal.
  • Never leave cigarettes in an ashtray unattended.
  • Use ashtrays with a double rim and deep centre.
  • Keep matches, lighters and lit candles out of the reach of children.
  • Never leave lit candles unattended.

BEDROOM:

  • Install at least one smoke alarm outside each sleeping area. For improved safety, install a smoke alarm in every bedroom.
  • Check electrical appliances regularly in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions: electric blankets, heating pads, curling irons, radios, televisions, irons.
  • Bedrooms should be non-smoking areas.

BASEMENT AND ATTIC:

  • Remove all combustible and flammable materials from the basement and attic.
  • Do not store gasoline in basements or attics! Store gasoline in well-ventilated areas, preferably outdoors.
  • Do not store propane indoors.
  • Use only approved containers to store and transport gasoline.
  • Have a thorough yearly maintenance check of the furnace carried out by a professional.
  • When replacing an old furnace, consult a professional to determine the most safe, economical and efficient system for your home.
  • Chimneys should be cleaned at least once a year.

GARAGE AND WORKSHOP:

  • Flammable materials – thinners, gasoline, paints, industrial cleaners – should be stored neatly in approved containers and away from possible ignitable sources.
  • Do not smoke, or leave matches or lighters in the garage or workshop.
  • Install and know how to properly use the appropriate fire extinguisher for the garage/workshop.
  • Keep the area clean. Remove garbage, paper products, oily rags and wool

- Fire Prevention Canada

Vulcan County

Vulcan County, conveniently located in beautiful sunny southern Alberta, is a vibrant and progressive rural community with prime farming, ranching, residential, leisure and recreation opportunities. Strategically situated one hour south of Calgary and one hour north of Lethbridge, we offer a rich quality of life in a rural setting.

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General Contact Info

 Box 180, 102 Centre St. Vulcan, AB
 (403) 485-2241
 (403) 485-2920

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