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Mississauga Fire & Emergency Services Reminder: Change Your Clocks and Your Smoke Alarm Batteries

Mar 06, 2009

Mississauga Fire & Emergency Services (MFES) reminds all residents to test their smoke alarms monthly to ensure they are operational and to change their batteries this weekend, during the switch to daylight savings time.

"There is nothing more difficult to accept than knowing that a life could have been saved by an operational smoke alarm," said Mississauga Fire Chief John McDougall.  "Since the beginning of 2009 there have been 19 fire fatalities across the province of Ontario."

McDougall explained that the Ontario Fire Code requires working smoke alarms on every level and outside all sleeping areas of Ontario homes.  "Statistics from the Ontario Fire Marshal's office reveal that in 50 per cent of fatal, preventable home fires, the victims had no smoke alarm warning," he said.

Homeowners without the required number of working smoke alarms are subject to fines of $235, and individual property owners that do not comply with the new law could be fined up to $50,000, receive a year in jail, or both.

"Smoke alarms are inexpensive and available at many stores," said Mississauga Fire & Emergency Services Chief Fire Prevention Officer, Brian Walsh. "Fires can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars in property damage and may result in the ultimate price, the loss of a family member. Installing and maintaining working smoke alarms in your home is no different than making sure you and your family are wearing seat belts while driving in a car. And don't forget to plan and practise a home fire escape plan with your family. When the smoke alarm sounds, everyone must know what to do."

MFES provides the following smoke alarm tips:

  • Test smoke alarms once a month.
  • Smoke alarms don't last forever so it is important to replace any smoke alarm that is more than 10 years old.
  • Change smoke alarm batteries routinely in the spring and fall when clocks are changed.
  • Gently vacuum dust out of smoke alarms every six months following the manufacturer's instructions.

For more information visit or call the Mississauga Fire & Emergency Services Public Education office at 905-615-4377.

Mississauga is Canada's sixth largest city with a population of more than 700,000. With well-established infrastructure and state-of-the-art facilities, the City is considered to be an employer of choice, delivering quality municipal programs and services to its citizens. Mississauga is a dynamic, diverse and progressive municipality, known for its economic strength and for being Canada's safest city.


Media Contact:
Catherine Monast
Senior Communications Advisor, Transportation & Works
Phone: 905-615-3200 x5046
TTY:    905-896-5151