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April 10, 2007
Two more fire deaths reinforces importance of mandatory residential sprinklers
  
Four of the seven fire deaths in Toronto this year were senior citizens. These tragedies could have been averted with residential sprinklers.

At 5:30 p.m. on Thursday 29 March 2007, Toronto Fire Services was called to a fire at 3835 Lakeshore Blvd. W. Upon arrival, firefighters entered a burning ground-floor apartment and rescued a husband, 90 years of age, and his wife, 76 years of age, and began CPR on them outside. One firefighter continued CPR in the back of a paramedic unit enroute to St. Joseph’s Health Sciences Centre.

Despite their valiant efforts the couple both died on Tuesday 03 April 2007.

The fire started in the living room where clothing was in contact with an electrical outlet that was missing its protective cover. A battery could not be found for a smoke alarm that melted in the fire. Likely this fire smoldered before reaching a free-burning stage. Thus, an operational smoke alarm would have given early warning to improve the chances of escaping and survival. A heat detector did eventually activate the building’s fire alarm system.

Considering that both people were seniors and physically challenged, residential sprinklers could have prevented the fire from rapidly advancing and cutting off their escape route.

Toronto Fire Services encourages residents to install fire sprinklers in their homes. “Anyone considering major renovations or a new home should also consider having residential sprinklers installed to avoid future tragedies,” said Toronto Fire Chief Bill Stewart. “Residential sprinklers, together with smoke alarms, will greatly enhance fire protection.”

Bill 2 is an Act to amend the Building Code Act, 1992 regarding making home fire sprinklers mandatory in new home construction. The short title of the Act is the Home Fire Sprinkler Act, 2005.

Toronto Fire Services advocates Bill 2 and encourages residents to contact their local Member of Provincial Parliament in support of the home fire sprinkler legislation.

For more information about home fire sprinklers, visit: http://www.toronto.ca/fire/prevention/sprinklers.htm

Media contact:
Toronto Fire Services media line: 416-338-0763


 

 

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