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July 13, 2017
Owner of property at 1315 Neilson Rd. pleads guilty to Ontario Fire Code violation
Following the February 5, 2016 fire on the fifth floor of 1315 Neilson Rd. in Toronto that claimed the lives of four elderly residents, the property owner, Toronto Community Housing Corporation (TCHC), has pleaded guilty to failing to implement the approved fire safety plan. The property owner has been fined $100,000, the maximum fine allowable, in accordance with the Fire Protection and Prevention Act.

The cause of the fire at the five-storey residential seniors building, which contains 126 residential units, has been determined by the Ontario Fire Marshal to be intentionally set. A Toronto Police Service criminal investigation into the fire is ongoing.

"This terrible fire is a grim reminder that violations of the Fire Code can pose serious risks and 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 both compliance and fire safety."

Subsequent to the fire, Toronto Fire Services conducted an inspection pursuant to Section 19 of the Fire Protection and Prevention Act. The inspection revealed deficiencies in the implementation of the fire safety plan.

Subsequent to the charges, steps have been taken to fully implement the fire safety plan at 1315 Neilson Rd. to the satisfaction of Toronto Fire Services. Since 2016, Fire Services has inspected all TCHC highrise and seniors buildings and will continue to do so on an annual basis.

A fire safety plan is designed to provide for occupant safety in the event of fire, to provide effective utilization of the fire safety features of the building and to minimize the possibility of fires. The plan discusses what occupants are to do in the event of fire, fire safety, the duties and responsibilities of supervisory staff, and other related issues. The fire safety plan also assists firefighters in the performance of their duties if an emergency ever occurs, by providing floor plans and building and tenant information.

For a fire safety plan to be effective, the owner must know the fire safety plan and be able to implement it in the event of fire. The Fire Code requires the owner to be responsible for carrying out the provisions for fire safety. While the fire safety plan has been approved by Toronto Fire Services, this approval does not relieve the owner of their responsibilities as set out under the Code.

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. In 2017, Toronto will honour Canada's 150th birthday with "TO Canada with Love," a year-long program of celebrations, commemorations and exhibitions. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can visit, call 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, or follow us on Twitter at and on Instagram at

Media Contact
Wynna Brown
Strategic Communications



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