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June 15, 2005
Fire safety award for blind woman
A Toronto Fire Services’ nominee was recognized by a Fire Marshal’s Public Fire
Safety Council Award on Wednesday, June 15 at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel.

On February 23 at 57 Mabelle Ave., Neena Saloiya was retrieving food from her
oven when she realized her oven mitt had caught fire. A smoke alarm activated,
alerting her to the danger. Recognizing the need to evacuate the apartment
immediately, Neena called 911 and directed Ziggy to guide her down the 20
flights of stairs to safety.

Unfortunately, the fire gutted the apartment, but the situation could have been
worse had it not been for the great team effort of Neena and Ziggy.

"If a fire occurs in the home, you may have only seconds to get out," said Fire
Marshal Bernard Moyle. "Neena and her guide dog Ziggy demonstrated impressive
teamwork that enabled them both to safely escape this very dangerous situation."

"Toronto Fire Services commends Neena for following the correct emergency
high-rise evacuation procedures by taking the stairs, instead of the elevator,"
said Fire Chief Bill Stewart. "This is another example where automatic home
sprinklers could have reduced property loss by upwards of 90 per cent."

For more information about home fire sprinklers visit

Media contact:

Captain Mike Strapko
Toronto Fire Services
416-334-5223 (pager)



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