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January 26, 2018
Convictions for Ontario Fire Code violations
  
Celia Gomez, the owner of 31 Alma Ave. (a property also known as 441 Dufferin St.), pleaded guilty in Provincial Offences Court January 9 following a 2016 fire that resulted in a firefighter sustaining serious injuries and that led to charges for violations under the Fire Protection and Prevention Act (FPPA). The charges included the absence of operating smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, lack of fire separations and defective and wedged-open fire doors that permitted the fire to spread rapidly throughout the second floor apartment.

In addition to the charges sworn by Toronto Fire Services, Gomez was charged by the Toronto Police Service with numerous offences under the Criminal Code, including two counts of arson by negligence, criminal negligence causing bodily harm, mischief endangering life and mischief under $5,000.

Gomez has been fined $42,000 plus the 25 per cent Provincial victim fine surcharge for the violations of the Ontario Fire Code in addition to a fine of $14,000 plus 25 per cent Provincial victim fine surcharge for previous convictions under the FPPA for similar violations of the Ontario Fire Code identified by Toronto Fire Services at the same property in 2014.

Gomez previously pleaded guilty in October 2017 to the charge of arson by negligence in an Ontario Court of Justice and yesterday received a penalty of six months house arrest and a three-year probation period, during which she is forbidden to own rental property or act as a landlord.

"This is an important reminder that violations of the Ontario Fire Code do pose serious risks to residents and responding firefighters and can result in tragic consequences," said Jim Jessop, Deputy Fire Chief. "Toronto Fire Services is committed to ensuring appropriate measures are taken by property owners to achieve compliance and will continue to work with Toronto Police in these types of fires involving serious injury or death."

Toronto Fire Services continues to work to reduce risk through fire prevention and enforcement strategies involving owners who fail to meet the Ontario Fire Code and jeopardize the safety of individuals and responding firefighters. Toronto Fire Services is committed to ensuring that appropriate measures are taken by property owners to achieve fire safety through compliance with the Ontario Fire Code and the Fire Protection and Prevention Act.

Toronto is Canada's largest city, the fourth largest in North America, and home to a diverse population of about 2.8 million people. It is a global centre for business, finance, arts and culture and is consistently ranked one of the world's most livable cities. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can visit http://www.toronto.ca, call 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, or follow us on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/TorontoComms, on Instagram at http://www.instagram.com/cityofto or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/cityofto.

Media Contact
Fire Services Media Line
416-338-0763
firemedia@toronto.ca

 

 

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