News Release Archive

  Every Nova Scotian should add fire safety to their Christmas
  "to do" list this year, advise Labour Minister Guy Brown and
  Fire Marshal Bob Cormier. For example, they say, put a smoke
  alarm under the tree as a gift for friends or family.
  "The best way to fight a fire is to prevent it from
  happening in the first place," said the minister. "I
  encourage everyone to take a few minutes to think about fire
  safety during this busy time of year."
  Last year, there were approximately 2,000 fires in Nova
  Scotian homes. "The personal suffering and loss caused by
  fire is even more devastating during the holidays," said the
  minister. "Let's make this season happy and fire safe."
  Here are the fire marshal's fire safety tips for the
  Christmas season:
  - Make sure natural trees are fresh. Watch for yellow
  needles and brittle branches.
  - Before putting up a tree, re-cut the butt and place it in
  a sturdy stand with at least one gallon of fresh water.
  Check the water level daily.
  - Keep the tree away from direct heat sources, exits and
  high traffic areas.
  - Artificial trees should be fire resistant. Trees with
  aluminum or steel frames conduct electricity and should not
  be decorated with strings of lights.
  - Keep cigarettes, candles or any open flame away from the
  - Disconnect tree lights at least 15 minutes before leaving
  the house or going to bed.
  - Natural trees dry out in about 10-15 days and should be
  removed soon after Christmas.
  - Make sure all tree lighting is approved by the Canadian
  Standards Association (CSA).
  - Bulbs should be compatible with the light set.
  - Check for loose connections, bad sockets and plugs,
  damaged wiring or other defects.
  - Do not use indoor lights or extension cords outside.
  Outdoor cords and lighting must be CSA approved for outdoor
  - Do not run extension cords under rugs or across doorways
  where they could become worn or broken.
  - Do not staple interior lights to walls or window frames.
  - Do not overload circuits.
  - Promptly remove wrapping paper and boxes from under the
  - Do not burn gift wrap in stoves or fireplaces. It creates
  sudden, extreme heat which can cause chimney fires.
  - Keep a portable fire extinguisher in a clearly visible and
  accessible location.
  - Make sure smoke alarms are installed and in working order.
  The Department of Labour includes the Office of the Fire
  Marshal which inspects buildings, investigates fires, and
  works with local fire departments on prevention and
  education initiatives.
  Labour Minister Guy Brown, Fire Marshal Bob Cormier and
  everyone at the department wish all Nova Scotians a safe and
  happy holiday season.
  Contact: Bob Cormier        902-424-5721
           Jennifer MacIsaac  902-424-4680 or 902-424-3219
  trp                      Dec. 19, 1995