News Release Archive

LABOUR/FIRE MARSHAL--Christmas Safety Tips
Labour Minister Gerald O'Malley and Fire Marshal Bob Cormier have
a gift for every Nova Scotian this Christmas that can last a
lifetime. It's a simple message to always practise fire safety. 

Prevention is the best way to fight a fire, and that means being
aware of some simple steps to take. "All of us have a
responsibility to take every precaution we can to prevent fires,
and part of that responsibility is practising good fire safety
habits," said Mr. O'Malley.

Fire Marshal Bob Cormier said there are many things people can do
over Christmas to reduce the possibility of fire, but there is
one thing that stands out. "Very simply put, common sense is the
key thing to remember this holiday season and, for that matter,

Mr. Cormier has a few suggestions for people to keep in mind when
setting up trees and lights:

- Before putting up the tree, re-cut the butt and put the tree in
a sturdy stand with at least a litre of water. Check the water

- Keep the tree away from direct heat sources, high traffic areas
and exits.

- Keep cigarettes, candles or any other open flame away from the

- Inspect the needles of live, cut trees or greens. If they are
brown or break easily, the greenery isn't fresh and poses a
greater fire risk.

- If you buy artificial trees or greens, ensure they are fire

- Make sure all lighting is approved by the Canadian Standards

- Check for loose connections, bad electrical sockets and plugs,
damaged wiring or other defects.

- Don't overload circuits.

- Keep a portable fire extinguisher in a clearly visible and
accessible location.

- Be sure smoke alarms are installed and in working order.
The fire marshal also reminds people that alcohol impairs the
ability to prevent fires and escape from them. Mr. Cormier
cautions people to avoid any situations involving alcohol and
potentially hazardous situations such as smoking and cooking. 

Mr. O'Malley and Mr. Cormier urge people to keep these tips in
mind this Christmas and during the rest of the year. Both men
wish everyone a happy and safe holiday season. 


Contact: John Whidden 
         Department of Labour

         Bob Cormier
         Fire Marshal

ngr                    Dec. 19, 1997                    9:00 a.m.