Multi-unit dwellings at highest risk of stove-top fires

Ontarians urged to follow basic precautions over holiday season

TORONTO, Dec. 23 /CNW/ - Social Housing Services Corporation urges Ontario residents to take precautions in the kitchen this holiday season, the most dangerous time of year for fires and fire fatalities in Ontario.

    -   Ontario averages more than 6,000 preventable home fires annually and
        the majority of these fires start in the kitchen
    -   Sixty-eight per cent of all home cooking fires involve stove-tops,
        and unattended cooking accounts for sixty-nine per cent of these
    -   Forty-three per cent of all stove-top fires occur in multi-unit

Social Housing Services Corporation, which provides services to municipal housing agencies across the province, is working with the Electrical Safety Authority and the Office of the Fire Marshall to educate social housing tenants about safe practices, and to recommend stove-top fire prevention products such as the Safe-T-Element, which has been endorsed by fire prevention officials and safety organizations across North America.

"Something as simple as turning away from the stove to answer the phone or offer your guest a drink can distract you long enough for a fire to start," said Lindsey Reed, CEO, Social Housing Services Corporation. "By following the basic rules of fire prevention and installing fire prevention products, everyone can go a long way to avoiding stove-top fires and protecting themselves and their loved ones."

Mississauga-based Pioneering Technology Corporation created the Safe-T-Element cooking system, which consists of cast-iron plates that regulate the heat delivered by stove-top burners. It limits the maximum temperature to just below the ignition point of oils, foods and common household materials. When the plate reaches a dangerous temperature, the stove automatically shuts off, as the plate cools the stove-top is turned on again.

To help prevent fires, Ontarians should:

    -   Make sure stove tops and nearby counters are kept clear and
    -   Keep curtains, utensils, paper towels and other things that can burn
        away from the stove
    -   Ensure pot handles are turned inward so they can't be bumped

About Social Housing Services Corporation

The Social Housing Services Corporation (SHSC) is a non-profit corporation that provides innovative services designed to empower social housing providers to develop safe, affordable homes and vibrant sustainable communities. SHSC offers such business-oriented solutions as insurance, investment, gas purchasing, energy management and research to address the needs of the affordable housing community.


For further information: For further information: or to set up an interview please contact: Alanna Banks, Media Profile,, (416) 342-1801

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