Recent tragic fire hits home for Oakville homeowner after electrical inspection uncovers hazards

MISSISSAUGA, ON, May 6, 2013 /CNW/ - Liz Campbell was shocked to discover a "litany of handyman horrors" hidden behind the walls and ceilings of her Oakville home, which just months before had been cleared by a home inspector.

"When I read about the tragic fire that recently took the lives of an entire family in Ontario, I thanked my lucky stars I had heard about Birnie CurrentSAFE," she said. "I had no idea what was going on behind my walls."

The CurrentSAFE Electrical Hazard Detection program, developed in 2005 by a reputable Pittsburgh electrical contractor who experienced an electrical fire in his own home, has been offered to GTA homeowners by Birnie Electric of Mississauga since 2010.

"Clients tell us the CurrentSAFE program virtually enables our specially trained electricians to see problems behind their walls, uncovering potential electrical hazards without any drilling or cutting," said Tim Birnie, owner of Birnie Electric. "It's like having an MRI for your home."

Birnie Electric has uncovered serious electrical hazards in more than 30 percent of the hundreds of homes inspected to date, Mr. Birnie noted. "When you buy a resale home, for instance, you have no idea what the previous owner has been doing. Home inspections can give people a false sense of security."

In Ms. Campbell's case, the CurrentSAFE inspection uncovered improperly installed lights, outlets and switches as well as potentially dangerous electrical grounding, all of which posed serious shock and fire hazards.

Mr. Birnie noted that the first stage of the CurrentSAFE program is a no-fee, in-home assessment to:

  • Ensure the home is properly equipped with functioning smoke detectors (51% of homes checked to date were not) - the first line of defence in
    case of fire.

  • Ensure homeowners complete a household fire safety and escape plan.

  • Conduct a preliminary inspection for potential electrical hazards.

May is Electrical Safety Month across North America, sponsored each year by the Electrical Safety Foundation International (EFSI). EFSI is a non-profit group committed to preventing electrical fires, injuries and fatalities.

Birnie CurrentSAFE offers an online assessment questionnaire which this month qualifies participants for a no-fee, in-home review and a chance to win free electricity for a year. Visit ismyhomesafe.ca to learn more.

Birnie Electric, founded in 1967, has a service team with an average of 20 years' electrical experience. They are fully insured, background security checked and covered under WSIB. In addition to delivering the Birnie CurrentSAFE program to residential customers, Birnie Electric provides design/build, electrical contracting and datacomm services to developers and contractors as well as to commercial and industrial businesses throughout Ontario.

SOURCE: Birnie CurrentSAFE

For further information:

Tim Birnie
President
Birnie CurrentSAFE / Birnie Electric Limited
1-855-569-1818
tbirnie@birnie.com

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