Fire Prevention Week off to a Roaring Start
October 2, 1998 12:04 PM
The unmistakable roar of fire trucks, parading along Barrington
Street in Halifax, will signal the start of Fire Prevention Week
on Sunday, Oct. 4.
The procession of fire trucks and fire service personnel --and,
of course, fire dog mascot Sparky --will culminate in a service
at the Grand Parade at 2 p.m. During the service, medals will be
presented to firefighters from across the province. The service
is jointly sponsored by the Department of Labour, Halifax
Regional Municipality, and the Nova Scotia Fire Officers
"This year will mark the first time Nova Scotia has held an
official launch for Fire Prevention Week," said Fire Marshal Bob
Cormier. "This kickoff, organized by provincial and municipal
officials as well as the fire officers' association, has a dual
purpose: to honour firefighters across the province and to get
Nova Scotians thinking about fire prevention on Oct. 4 and all
This year, Fire Prevention Week runs from Oct. 4 to Oct. 10 with
the theme: Fire Drills: The Great Escape! This awareness week
always includes Oct. 9, the date in 1871 on which, according to
legend, Mrs. O'Leary's cow kicked over a lantern in the shed and
started the Chicago fire that burned 17,450 buildings, caused
$196 million in damage, killed 250 people, and left nearly
"We are fortunate to never have had a fire that size here in Nova
Scotia," said Mr. Cormier. "But we consider all fires preventable
and even one fatality an avoidable tragedy. Fire Prevention Week
is a time to renew our commitment to reducing fire's impact on
The fire marshal's annual report for 1997 shows that fire claimed
15 lives and injured 56 in Nova Scotia, including 31
firefighters. More than 2,000 reported fires caused about $26.4
million damage. That is a per capita loss of $35.68. Leading
causes of fire were heating equipment, smoking materials, open
flames, electrical equipment, and cooking equipment.
"Each and every Nova Scotian should be educated to prevent fire
and to escape its path," said Labour Minister Russell MacKinnon.
"If a fire breaks out, people can take comfort in the fact that
there are thousands of men and women across the province trained
in firefighting and rescue.
"Without the efficient and effective intervention of Nova
Scotia's fire service, the loss of life and property and damage
would be far greater. I would like to thank the people of this
province who assist in fire prevention and protection and who
support their local fire service."
Each fire department marks Fire Prevention Week with special
events in its community. Along with the Fire Marshal's Office and
municipal officials, they are also promoting a provincewide fire
drill on Wednesday, Oct. 7.
NOTE: The following is intended for use by broadcast media.
The unmistakable roar of fire trucks, parading along
Halifax's Barrington Street, will signal the start of
Fire Prevention Week on Sunday.
This is the first year Nova Scotia will have an
official launch for Fire Prevention Week.
The procession of fire trucks and fire service
personnel will culminate in a service at the Grand Parade
at 2 p-m.
The launch, organized by provincial and municipal
officials, is intended to honour firefighters across the
province and to get Nova Scotians thinking about fire
Fire Prevention Week, in the words of Fire Marshal
Bob Cormier, is a time to renew our commitment to
reducing fire's impact on our communities.
Last year, fire claimed 15 lives and injured 56
in Nova Scotia.
Labour Minister Russell MacKinnon encourages all
Nova Scotians to take part in Fire Prevention Week
activities in their communities.
Contact: Bob Cormier
Department of Labour
ngr Oct. 2, 1998 12:04 p.m.