Today, Toronto Fire Services joined the Ontario Office of the Fire Marshal (OFM) to launch Test Your Smoke Alarm Day at Alvin Curling Public School in Scarborough.
Test Your Smoke Alarm Day marks Ontario’s first-ever day of action to promote installing and testing working smoke alarms in every home across the province and to bring attention to the importance of having working smoke alarms. In 2022, Ontario experienced the highest number of fire deaths in 20 years, with 133 fire deaths, 13 of which occurred in the City of Toronto.
Students participated in a live fire drill, met with Toronto Firefighters, explored fire trucks and learned about the importance of working smoke alarms in their homes. In advance of today’s launch, Toronto Fire Services Public Educators have been distributing campaign posters and resource materials to every City of Toronto Community Centre and Toronto Public Library.
Following today’s official launch, Toronto Fire Services’ Public Educators will go door to door in the Alvin Curling Public School residential community to speak with residents about the importance of having working smoke alarms in their homes and to encourage them to test their smoke alarms and prepare home escape plans.
In the last five years, approximately one half of residential fires in Toronto occurred in homes with no working smoke alarms. In addition to being required by law, smoke alarms are the only effective early warning devices that provide individuals and families with as much time as possible to safely escape a fire in their homes. Fire and smoke can spread rapidly through a house, leaving those in the building with only seconds to escape safely once the smoke alarm sounds.
For the past few months, Test Your Smoke Alarm Day was promoted as part of the Saved by the Beep Campaign, which has been translated into 19 languages to meet the diverse needs of people in Toronto. The campaign emphasizes key smoke alarm safety messages:
• Ensure there is a working smoke alarm on every level of the home and outside all sleeping areas
• Change smoke alarm batteries at least once per year and whenever the low battery warning chirps
• Smoke alarms don’t last forever; replace them every 10 years
• Test smoke alarms monthly to make sure they work
• Practice your home escape plan
More information about Test York Smoke Alarm Day is available on the Saved by the Beep – Test Your Smoke Alarm Day 2023 webpage: http://savedbythebeep.ca/.
“Having working smoke alarms outside every sleeping area and on every level of your home is the best way to keep your family fire-safe in your home. Today, on Test Your Smoke Alarm Day, I encourage all Toronto residents to take a few seconds to test their smoke alarms, ensure they are working and not expired and practice your home escape plan.”
– Matthew Pegg, Fire Chief, Toronto Fire Services
SOURCE City of Toronto