Fireworks not only fire concern on Canada Day



    
    Open flame and unpredictable flight path of Flying Lanterns a fire hazard
    says Fire Marshal
    

    TORONTO, June 26 /CNW/ -

    NEWS

    The Flying Lantern is the latest consumer product to be sold alongside
fireworks in retail stores and on online distribution websites. Posing similar
risks of property damage and fire loss as fireworks, the Ontario Fire Marshal
is strongly discouraging Ontarians from purchasing or using Flying Lanterns.
    The OFM has written to Health Canada's Consumer Product Safety Bureau to
request that it take the necessary actions to prevent this product from being
sold in Canada. In the meantime, Ontario fire departments have been advised to
caution members of their communities about the potential fire hazards
associated with the Flying Lantern. Retailers who sell this product have been
encouraged to remove these flying lanterns from their store shelves.
    In addition to the Flying Lanterns, Ontarians are also being urged again
to attend fireworks displays hosted by their municipalities. The message comes
at a time when some municipalities in Ontario are cancelling events due to
labour disputes.

    QUOTES

    "The Flying Lantern resembles a small paper hot-air balloon and is
fuelled by an open flame (candle) which allows it to lift to extreme heights
and to drift for long distances until the flame goes out," said Ontario Fire
Marshal Pat Burke. "Due to their uncontrolled and unpredictable flight path,
the lanterns can land on trees, building rooftops, or other combustible
materials while still burning and potentially cause a fire."

    "When it comes to fireworks, there are many municipalities in Ontario
that will be hosting fireworks displays with experts who are trained to handle
and discharge fireworks safely," says Ontario Fire Marshal Pat Burke. "For
everyone else, fireworks can be extremely dangerous. For this reason, family
fireworks or informal neighbourhood displays are not recommended."

    
    QUICK FACTS

    -   If you still choose to have a family fireworks or an informal
        neighbourhood display, check with your local fire department about
        regulations regarding fireworks.
    -   Appoint a responsible adult to be in charge of discharging fireworks.
    -   Carefully read and follow the label directions on fireworks
        packaging.
    -   Always keep a water hose or pail of water close by when discharging
        fireworks.
    -   Keep sparklers away from children.

    LEARN MORE

    To get more information about fireworks and Flying Lanterns, visit
www.ofm.gov.on.ca and download the Fireworks Safety Tips fact sheet or Flying
Lanterns Communique.

                            Fireworks Safety Tips
                     From the Office of the Fire Marshal

    -   To minimize the risk of fire and burn injury, the fire service does
        not recommend family fireworks or informal neighbourhood displays.

    -   The fire service recommends attending public fireworks displays
        hosted by your municipality or other responsible organization.

    -   If you still choose to have a family fireworks or an informal
        neighbourhood display, check with your local fire department about
        regulations regarding fireworks. Here are some important safety tips
        to be followed:

        -  Appoint a responsible person to be in charge. Only adults who are
           aware of the hazards and essential safety precautions should
           handle and discharge fireworks.

        -  Carefully read and follow the label directions on fireworks
           packaging.

        -  Always keep a water hose or pail of water close by when
           discharging fireworks.

        -  Discharge fireworks well away from combustible materials like
           buildings, trees and dry grass.

        -  Keep onlookers a safe distance away, upwind from the area where
           fireworks are discharged.

        -  Light only one firework at a time and only when they are on the
           ground. Never try to light a firework in your hand or re-light dud
           fireworks. For dud fireworks, it is best to wait 30 minutes and
           soak them in a bucket of water. Dispose of them in a metal
           container.

        -  Discharge fireworks only if wind conditions do not create a safety
           hazard.

        -  Keep sparklers away from children. Sparklers burn extremely hot
           and can ignite clothing, cause blindness and result in severe
           burns. As the sparkler wire remains hot for some minutes after
           burnout, it should be immediately soaked in water to avoid injury.

        -  If someone gets burned, run cool water over the wound for three to
           five minutes and seek medical attention, if necessary.

        -  Due to the public fire safety hazard, the Ontario fire service is
           strongly discouraging the public from purchasing or using Flying
           Lanterns, which resemble small, paper, hot air balloons, fuelled
           by an ignited wax candle. This product has the potential to land
           on trees, building rooftops or other property while still ignited
           and can result in a severe fire.
    





For further information:

For further information: Carol Gravelle, Office of the Fire Marshal,
(416) 325-3138; Bev Gilbert, Office of the Fire Marshal, (416) 325-3178

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