EDMONTON, Oct. 30, 2013 /CNW/ - Each year in Canada, fire and carbon monoxide (CO) leads to loss of life and property caused by malfunctioning or improperly used smoke and CO detectors and fuel-burning appliances. Many of these tragedies might have been prevented by simple safety checks. As many Canadians plan to turn on their heating appliances for the first time as Daylight Savings Time ends, Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) gives tips on how to prevent fires and CO from becoming a danger in your home.
"As Daylight Savings Time ends, making the time to create a safety checklist that includes reminders like replacing batteries in your CO and smoke detectors, is a wise investment that will help keep families safe at a minimal cost," says Bill Adams, IBC Vice-President, Western and Pacific.
Here are a few home safety tips for this time of year:
- Check and maintain your smoke detectors. Replace batteries at least twice a year to coincide with Daylight Savings Time changes.
- Review your family's emergency plan, or create one for the first time. Hold a meeting with family members to explain what to do and where to go in case of an emergency.
- Check your first aid kit and replace missing supplies.
- Have your fuel-burning appliances including oil and gas furnaces, gas water heaters, gas ranges, ovens and fireplaces inspected by a trained professional at the beginning of every heating season.
- Have a professional make certain that your vents and chimneys are connected, in good condition, and not blocked.
- Choose appliances that vent their fumes to the outside whenever possible, have them properly installed, and maintain them according to manufacturers' instructions.
- Install a CO detector on every floor of your home. Do not install CO detectors near windows or vents, bathrooms, heating or fuel-burning appliances or smoke alarms.
- When choosing a CO alarm, look for the CSA Blue Flame mark and the reference "CSA 6.19-01" - the most up-to-date Canadian standard.
- CO alarms should be installed as per manufacturer's instructions.
- Remember to test your CO alarm and smoke alarm once a month by pushing the test button on the unit.
About Insurance Bureau of Canada
Insurance Bureau of Canada is the national industry association representing Canada's private home, car and business insurers. Its member companies represent 90% of the property and casualty (P&C) insurance market in Canada. The P&C insurance industry employs over 118,600 Canadians, pays more than $7 billion in taxes to the federal, provincial and municipal governments, and has a total premium base of $46 billion.
If you require more information, IBC spokespeople are available to discuss the details in this media release.
SOURCE: Insurance Bureau of Canada
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