Fire Facts

expandOpen-air burning

If you have an outdoor clay or patio fireplace – what some people call “chimineas” – you should know that the Ontario Fire Code and the Environmental Protection Act regulate how you use them. The Ontario Fire Marshal considers that using these outdoor is “open-air burning” and, as a result, Brampton Fire and Emergency Services have to approve when and how you use them.


The City of Brampton has a very restrictive process for approving open-air burning. For example, you can only burn in the open air on a property that the City has zoned as agricultural or estate residential - meaning that the property is larger than .08 hectares (2 or more acres). The City does not permit open-air burning on property that it has zoned as residential.


If your property satisfies the zoning restriction, you’ll need a burning permit. A burning permit is valid for periods of one day, one week or one month. The permit costs $25 + HST for one day, $50 + HST for one week and $100 + HST for one month. Once you’ve got a permit, you have to follow to the conditions of the permit, which might include:

  • no burning at night - between sunset and sunrise
  • no burning less than ten metres (30 feet) from any building, structure, hedge, fence, roadway or overhead wire or obstruction of any kind
  • no burning if the wind speed is more than twenty-four kilometres per hour (about 15 miles per hour)

You must make sure that someone who is competent to supervise the fire and to extinguish it promptly in the event of danger is around constantly where the fire is burning. You can’t burn in the open air unless there is you have at least five meters (15 feet) of space clear of combustible material around the edge of the fire.


A court of law could fine you as much as $50,000 – or imprison you for as long as one year - if you violate these rules.


The City’s restrictions are strict and in most cases, the City prevents you from using the outdoor fireplace often, particularly if you want to use it after dark.

expandTrendy outdoor fireplaces are regulated by the Ontario Fire Code and their use is greatly controlled and restricted by the City of Brampton.

Out doorBrampton, Ontario - The recent trend in backyard fireplaces and numerous inquiries from Brampton residents has prompted the Brampton Fire & Emergency Services to communicate their position on open air burning. There are various types of outdoor fireplaces. These units vary in design from a steel firebox with a screened opening and short vent stack to a clay firepot with an opening for fuel loading and a large vent stack similar in appearance to a large flower vase.
According to Brian Maltby, Division Chief, Fire Prevention Chief Fire Official "the use of these outdoor fireplaces are regulated by the Ontario Fire Code, and as such, their use is greatly controlled and restricted in the City of Brampton."

Some of these restrictions include, but are not limited to: the issue of an opening air burning permit by Brampton Fire & Emergency Services prior to each use, and, may only be used on property that is zoned as agricultural (not residential) and, may not be used after dusk or before dawn.

Brian Maltby added "Brampton Fire and Emergency Services is of the opinion that the vast majority of homeowners would not be in compliance with the Fire Code when normally using these outdoor fireplaces in the City of Brampton."

expandSeven Out of Ten Fires Occur in the Home

Remove pans of cooking fats and oils from the stove when you’re not using them – you might turn on the wrong burner. Unplug kettles, fry pans and other appliances when you’re not using them. Don’t hang clothes above the stove to dry – they may fall on a burner. Keep matches out of the reach of children. Use only safety matches. Have an approved fire extinguisher handy for grease fires.



Living room

Use screens for fireplaces, because flying sparks can easily start a fire. Don’t use extension cords instead of permanent wiring. Install enough electrical outlets for your needs. Provide deep ashtrays for smokers, and be sure to dump the contents in a metal container or toilet each evening before you go to bed.

 Smooking in Bedroom



Never smoke in bed. Many people are killed in fires that result from a sleepy person dropping a cigarette onto bedding

  Flamable Liquids


Basement and attic

Remove everything that might catch fire from the basement and attic. If you don’t remove them, they will add fuel to any fire and make it easier for one to start. Ask a service person to check all furnace safety controls, the chimney and flue for leaks and clean the furnace at least once a year. Remove flammable liquids from the house. Remove oversized fuses – regular domestic circuits only require a 15-ampere fuse. Consult a qualified electrician if you think you need fuses with more than 15 amps. Have your wiring checked periodically.


 Fire Alarm


Plan for a fire
An hour of planning may save years of life. Make regular fire drills a family affair -a serious game, but never a scary one.

Your home should have at least one smoke alarm to make sure you wake up in time to escape.


Make sure everyone knows the two ways out of each bedroom. Beware of stairs because they can become a chimney for smoke, hot gas and fire. Remember, nobody goes back for clothes, toys or pets.


If the window leads to a porch or garage roof - fine. If not, then buy a folding escape ladder. Adults can gently drop children out of second-floor windows by lowering them by their arms.


Don't risk serious injury by jumping in panic from a high window. Stay in the room, close the door tightly. Open a window a little and sit on the floor to get fresh air. Hang a sheet out to show rescuers where you are.

 Door Nop



A hot door is a warning

Never open a door without checking it for heat and looking to see if smoke is leaking in around the edges. Keep all doors closed at night, particularly basement, kitchen and bedroom doors.


Get a neighbour to call 911, or after you’ve made sure that everyone has got out of the house, use a neighbour’s phone to call 911. Speak slowly on the phone and give your address.


When buying electrical appliances and fixtures, look for the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) seal of approval. CSA is an organization that tests products for safety. The CSA seal lets you know that it has tested the products for shock and fire hazards. Hydro One requires everyone in Ontario to use only appliances and fixtures that CSA has tested and listed.


When buying fire extinguishers and fire alarm systems, look for the Underwriters' Laboratories of Canada label. ULC is another organization that tests products for safety. The ULC label lets you know that ULC has tested the equipment and it will perform satisfactorily if you use and install it according to the manufacturer’s instructions.


Gas-fired equipment which bears ULC seal and which you have installed and operated in accordance with Canadian Gas Association  instructions and the Energy Act will serve you safely and reliably.


The Energy Act also requires that all oil-fired equipment in Ontario have either the CSA or ULC label.





expandCooking is the number-one cause of home fires, fire deaths and burns

Cooking is the number-one cause of home fires and a leading cause of fire deaths and burns. Preventing kitchen fires is just common sense. Follow these quick and easy tips for fire-safe cooking every time! 

Lid on Fire

Put a lid on it!               
Always keep a large lid near the stove when you are cooking. If a pot catches fire, slide the lid over the pot and turn off the stove. Never put water on a burning pot or try to move it to the sink.

Keep an eye on your frying Pan
Never leave cooking unattended-particularly if you are using oil or high temperatures. A stevedored fire can start in a flash, so keep a close eye on your cooking at all times.

 Don't Reach out
Don't reach for danger
Be sure to wear tight-fitting sleeves, or roll up your sleeves when you use the stove. A dangling sleeve on a housecoat or sweater can easily brush against a hot burner and catch fire.

Fight or Flight?

A fire extinguisher is useful – only if you know how to operate it. Use a multi-purpose, extinguisher that is right for your particular kitchen. Fire extinguishers should have a label from the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) or the Underwriters Laboratories of Canada (ULC). These organizations test products for safety. Only use fire extinguishers on small, contained fires. Never allow the fire to get between you and the exit.


Clear the clutter

Items, such as wooden or plastic cooking utensils, dishcloths, paper towels and pot holders, can easily ignite if they are too close to a burner. Keep all items that can catch fire a safe distance away from your stove.


Cool a burn

If you experience a kitchen burn, immediately run cool water over the burn for several minutes. The water will prevent more burning and relieve the pain. If the burn is severe, go to Emergency at a nearby hospital or call your doctor.

Prevent fire: Use a fryer
Deep-fat frying is a major kitchen hazard. Oil that you’re heating in a pot on the stove can easily overheat and burst into flames. Use only a deep fat fryer with a thermostat that controls the heat.

Deep-fat frying is a major kitchen hazard. Oil that you’re heating in a pot on the stove can easily overheat and burst into flames. Use only a deep fat fryer with a thermostat that controls the heat.

You snooze... You lose!
People trying to cook while under the influence of alcohol cause many fires – especially at night. Keep a close eye on drinkers and install a smoke alarm in every level of your home.



Test Smoke Alarm


Test your smoke alarms

Ontario law requires all homes to have working smoke alarms. Install at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home and outside sleeping areas. Test your smoke alarms every month and change the batteries at least once a year.




expandExperts estimate that kids and young people start 50 per cent of all arson fires.

TAPP – C Program (The Arson Prevention Program for Children)


Fire fascinates all children. They like to watch campfires, woodstoves and candles. For some, this fascination goes beyond watching. Sometimes it results in children setting fires repeatedly.


Experts estimate that kids and young people start 50 per cent of all arson fires. Curiosity motivates about 50 to 60 per cent of these children. For the remainder, however, fire play may be a symptom of other serious problems.


Some experts estimate that as many as ten times more fires occur than Fire Departments know about. This may be, in part, because children cause many of these fires that no-one ever reports. Unfortunately, unless someone reports their behaviour, so that the fire safety staff can educate the kids, they may well continue setting fires until a large and potentially tragic fire results.


If you suspect a problem with kids setting fires, please contact us at: 905-458-5404 or 905-458-5580.


If you live outside the Region of Peel, please contact your local police or fire department. They can help you.

expandFacts About Smoke Alarms

1 – Protect yourself and your family

Most fire deaths occur in homes without working smoke alarms. Remember, only a working smoke alarm can save your life.


2 – Smoke alarms save lives

Most fatal fires occur at night when people are asleep. Often, victims never wake up. A working smoke alarm will detect smoke and sound an alarm to alert you, giving you precious time to escape.


3 – Buying the best alarm

Different types of smoke alarms have different features. Some alarms you can connect alarms to the main power supply of your house, some you can power with batteries and some combine both electrically connected and battery-powered features. We highly recommend a pause feature to reduce nuisance alarms.


4 – One smoke alarm is not enough

Install smoke alarms on every level of your home and near sleeping areas. If you or your loved ones close the bedroom doors while you’re sleeping, install an alarm inside each bedroom.


5 – Where to install smoke alarms

Because smoke rises, you should place alarms on the ceiling. If you cannot do this, place them high up on a wall, according to manufacturer's instructions. Avoid areas such as near bathrooms, heating appliances, windows or close to ceiling fans.


6 – Test your smoke alarm regularly

Every month, test your smoke alarms, using the alarm test button. Once a month, test your alarm by letting smoke from a smouldering cotton string activate the alarm. Follow your owner's manual.


7 – Change your clock, change your battery

Install a new battery of the proper type at least once a year. If the low-battery warning beeps, replace the battery immediately. We change our clocks each spring and fall, so that’s a good time to remind you to change your smoke alarm batteries too.


8 – Gently vacuum your alarm every six months

Dust can clog a smoke alarm, so carefully vacuum the inside of a battery-powered unit, using the soft bristle brush. If you’ve connected your alarm to the main power supply, shut the power off and vacuum the outside vents only. After you restore power, test the unit.


9 – Smoke alarms don't last forever

Smoke alarms do wear out, so, if you think your alarms are more than 10 years old, replace them with new ones.


10 – Plan your escape

Make sure that everyone knows the sound of the smoke alarm and what to do if a fire occurs. Regularly practice your home fire escape plan. Know two ways out of every room and arrange a meeting place outside your house, where everyone can gather if a fire occurs. Once you’re out, stay out and call 911 from a neighbour's home.