Safety Tips - Fire Prevention

Tips for Protecting Your Home

The safety advice on this page is aimed at reducing many of the fire incidents that strike farms. As a resident or employees, we must assume responsibility for helping to establish a fire safe environment.

Smoke Detectors

  • Install smoke detectors on every level of your home and outside of sleeping areas.
  • Test every detector at least once a month.
  • Keep smoke detectors dust free.
  • Replace the batteries at least once a year, more frequently if the detector starts making chirping sounds.
  • If you have a hard wired smoke detector make sure the light is blinking periodically, this indicates the alarm is active.

Fire Extinguishers

  • Fire extinguishers should be mounted in the kitchen, garage and workshop.
  • Purchase an ABC type extinguisher for all types of fires.
  • Learn how to use your fire extinguisher before there is an emergency.
  • Remember; use an extinguisher on small fires only. If there is a large fire, get out immediately and call 911 from another location

Kitchen

Careless cooking is the number one cause of residential fires.

  • It is wise to have a fire extinguisher near the kitchen. Keep it 10 feet from the stove on the exit side of the kitchen.
  • Never pour water on a grease fire, turn off the stove and cover the pan with a lid, or close the oven door.
  • Keep pot handles on the stove pointing to the back, and always watch young children in the kitchen.
  • Do not store items on the stovetop, as they could catch fire.
  • Keep kitchen appliances clean and in good condition, and turn them off and disconnect them when not in use.
  • Do not overload kitchen electrical outlets and do not use appliances with frayed or cracked wires.
  • Be sure your stove is not located under a window in which curtains are hanging.
  • Clean the exhaust hood and duct over the stove regularly, and wipe up spilled grease as soon as the surface of the stove is cool.
  • Operate your microwave only when there is food in it.

A fire in a rural area can be far more serious than a fire in a town where water is in adequate supply for firefighting. Learn what you can do to prevent fires on your farm! When a fire is discovered, call the fire department immediately! Red Deer County has implemented a provincial 9-1-1 service, for its ratepayers. This means help is contacted immediately, reducing the overall response times. Here are some things you can do ahead of time to ensure proper information is given to the 911 operator should you ever require emergency help. Prepare the following information and post by your phone.

  • your name
  • your phone number
  • your legal land description or rural address
  • your subdivision name, if applicable
  • the township and range road intersection which you live closest to
  • which township and range road your driveway is on
  • which direction your driveway turns off the road: north, south, east, west
  • color of your home
  • any buildings or objects that make your yard unique compared to neighbors around you
  • can the yard site be seen from the County road?

Remember you may not be placing the call. For example, a babysitter or guest that is staying at your residence may make the call. The more information you can provide, the easier it will be for the emergency department to arrive at your location promptly.

Protecting your home

  • choose a fire safe location and build fire safe structures when building your home, and out buildings
  • provide adequate roadways in and out of your property to ensure emergency vehicles room to enter, and turn around
  • consult local fire officials and find out what fire protection is available
  • clearly mark your home's location so emergency services can find you

Protect your Life and Property

  • Install and maintain smoke detectors, by checking batteries and testing every month.
  • consider installing automatic sprinklers
  • create a safety zone extending at least 30 feet in all directions around your house and other structures
  • maintain ample safety exits, each room should have 2 means of escape
  • be sure electrical wiring is inspected, replace any worn or frayed electrical/extension cords
  • do not burn household trash in outdoor incinerators
  • stack firewood away from your house or out buildings

Fire Safety Rules on the Farm

  • never permit smoking in barns or near storage of any flammable materials, post "no smoking" signs in hazardous areas
  • store petroleum products (tanks) at least 40 feet (12 meters) from any building
  • never refuel an engine while it is hot or running, be sure the motor is cool and shut off
  • always refuel equipment outdoors
  • spontaneous ignition of hay and other crops can be a cause of many fires, ensure all crops are dry and properly cured before storing
  • check regularly for other spontaneous heating such as manure piles, or oily or paint covered rags
  • equip all buildings with lightning rods
  • never use fumigants near an open flame or electrical equipment

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