Citizen Engagement: questions comments concerns

Fire Department - Safety Tips

COOKING - #1 Cause of Home Fires. 

Cooking oil and grease are the major cause of residential fires in Canada.

Kitchen fires, due to cooking oil or grease catching, cause the fastest-spreading destruction of any kind of residential fire.



Do not leave cooking unattended. Do not wear loose clothing with long sleeves. Have your wood stove installed by a qualified installer.



Provide fire screens for fireplaces. Provide sufficient electrical outlets for your needs. If there are smokers in your home, check the furniture for fallen cigarettes or embers before your leave the room.



When clothes are ironed, ensure the plug is pulled when finished. Check electrical appliances for safe operation. e.g. Electric blankets. Never smoke in the bedroom.



Remove all unnecessary combustibles. Have your furnace and chimney and flue connections checked for leaks and clean the furnace at least once a year. Remove flammable liquids from the house. Never store gasoline in basements, or other confined areas.



Most contain flammable materials such as thinners, gasoline, paints and industrial cleaners. They should be properly covered, stored neatly and kept from ignition sources such as space heaters. Keep your workshop free of combustibles like papers and wood shavings and oil rags.



Concise Guide on Home Safety Precautions for Senior Citizens

Written By: Jessica Walter 

Falls are the number one reason for injury-related hospitalizations among Canadian senior citizens. Nearly one in every three older Canadians fall every year and this number has steadily been increasing. Between 2005 and 2013, the Public Health Agency of Canada reported that injuries due to falls among senior citizens increased from 49.4% to 58.8%. Half of these falls that require hospitalization occur in the home.

These staggering statistics show just how prone senior citizens are to falling in the comfort of their own home, and how important it is to take preventative measures to protect our elderly.

Bathroom Safety 

Bathrooms are a hazardous location for anyone, despite age, because of the high risk of slippage from water spills. Here are few ways to prevent seniors slipping in the bathroom.

  • Put a non-slip surface in your tub or shower.
  • Doors in showers should be made of safety glass or plastic.
  • Grab bars should be installed by the toilet and bathtub in the event of an emergency slip.
  • The light switch should be near the door to allow enough light to identify potential water hazards.
  • Flooring should be made of a textured tile and matte finish.

Staircase Safety

Unsafe staircases lead to many falls, even for healthy younger adults. Therefore, it is easy to see why this is a problem area for falls in senior citizens.

  • Evenly built stairs decrease the odds of tripping and falling.
  • If edges of the stairs are not clearly marked, mark them with paint to distinguish between each step.
  • You should always clean and clear the stairs to prevent stepping on objects.
  • There should be sufficient lighting so that each step can be seen clearly.
  •  Stairs with carpets should be well maintained. Ripped or torn carpets should be fixed immediately to avoid tripping.
  • Handrails are necessary for every staircase. Circular handrails are the best as they provide better grip compared to rectangular rails. These rails should be at elbow height to allow for the best placement when walking up the stairs.

Kitchen Safety

When addressing areas with a risk of falling, people generally think about the bathroom or staircase. However, the kitchen is another room that presents a high risk of falling in senior citizens. Spontaneous fires in the kitchen can cause people to panic and fall back. Therefore, it is important to follow fire safety rules in the kitchen.

  • Never leave appliances unattended.
  • The area around the stove should be free of clutter, particularly of things that can easily catch fire.
  • Be sure to keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen that is working and less than ten years old.

Bedroom Safety

Injuries can happen to any room and the bedroom is no different. Here are the steps needed to protect your sanctuary.

  • Provide an easy to reach light next to your bed so that you have enough lighting should you need to leave the bed.
  • Put cords in areas where you will not trip on them.
  • Keep a flashlight within reach of the bed in case the power goes out and you need to navigate the room.


For more information, visit Proven to Protect You – The Ultimate Elderly Home Safety Checklist. 

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