As the long weekend approaches the County of Brant Fire Department has a message for Cottage goers;
With the warmer weather upon us, many people excitedly return to their cottage, cabin, motorhome, boat and/or houseboat.
“This is such a great time of year,” said Jeff Balkwill, Fire Prevention Officer for the County of Brant. “We want you to have a relaxing and enjoyable summer in the great outdoors. When you return to your cottage, trailer or houseboat, please remember to replace the batteries in your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms and test them regularly. If your seasonal getaway has a fuel-burning appliance then carbon monoxide alarms are required to keep you safe.”
The following are safety tips for returning to your seasonal getaway:
· Know the telephone number for the local fire department and your seasonal home’s emergency sign number, in case of emergency.
· Have a preplanned escape route, with a meeting place. Keep it posted in a common area.
· Clean barbecues before using them. Keep an eye on lit barbecues and ensure all combustibles, as well as children and pets are kept well away from them. Fires can happen when barbecues are left unattended.
· Keep barbecue lighters and matches out of sight and reach of children.
· Have your fuel-burning appliances checked at the beginning of each season.
· Check with your local fire department, municipality, or Ministry of Natural Resources to determine whether open air burning is permitted before having a campfire or burning brush. If open burning is allowed, fires should be built on bare soil or on exposed rock. Remove leaves and twigs from around the fire to keep it from spreading. Always keep a bucket of water, sand, or even a shovel close by and supervise the fire at all times.
· If you must smoke, do so outside. Keep a large can with water nearby so cigarette butts can be safely discarded. If you drink, do so responsibly. Tobacco use and excessive alcohol consumption are contributing factors in many fires and can lead to serious injuries.
· Burn candles in sturdy candleholders that will not tip and are covered with a glass shade. When you go out, blow out.
“When vacationing in an isolated area, keep in mind that help from emergency services may be some distance away. It’s important that you eliminate your risk of fire,” said Balkwill. “We hope everyone enjoys this upcoming season and the great outdoors.”
If you have any questions about fire safety, please contact the Fire Prevention Officers, Jeff, Tom and Doug, at the County of Brant Fire Department; 519.442.4500. They are happy to help!