Over the summer, Kingston Fire & Rescue tested 2,373 residential smoke alarms as part of its “Wake Up Kingston” fire safety campaign aimed at promoting awareness about the importance of having a working smoke alarm.
“The participating households are really appreciative and it’s great for the team to know they’ve helped keep these people safe,” says Paul Patry, Assistant Chief, Director of Fire Prevention, who says the program offers and excellent opportunity for firefighters to interact with the public and promote fire prevention in a non-emergency situation.
Between June and September on-duty career and volunteer firefighters visited 1083 residential homes in selected areas of Kingston to perform voluntary door-to-door smoke alarm inspections and found of the homes visited:
– About 4 per cent had no working smoke alarms
– About 20 per cent were not in compliance with the Ontario Fire Code (i.e. did not have a working smoke alarm on each level of the home)
– 48 per cent required a smoke alarm to be installed somewhere in the home to ensure the safety of all occupants
– 23 per cent of the homes needed batteries installed or replaced.
According to the Ontario Fire Marshals’ office, working smoke alarms improve your chance of surviving a residential fire by 50 per cent. Roughly two-thirds of all home fire deaths result from fires in homes with no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms.