5 Easy Ways You Can Help Your Fire Department at Home.
Post your street address.
How this helps us: This one may seem like a no-brainer, but we still encounter houses/businesses that either don’t have an address posted or it’s located in a spot where it cannot easily be seen from the road. Most of the times when you call 9-1-1, time is of the essence. Simply having your address visible from the road for emergency vehicles can save us crucial minutes in getting to you. The SCRD guidelines for building addresses suggests a white background for the sign with dark or reflective numbers that are at least 3 inches high.
Clear around fire hydrants in our neighborhood.
How this helps us: While brush cutting around hydrants is part of our annual scheduled maintenance by the Fire Department and the municipality, it’s impossible to keep up in the spring, summer and fall months with the speed of growth of grass and bushes. Cutting long grass and bushes back from around fire hydrants in your neighborhood helps us easily locate them in the event of a fire, and again, can help save those crucial minutes.
Declutter around the outside of your home.
How this helps us: In a lot of residential areas there is minimal space between your home and your neighbors. In the event of a fire, we need to be able to easily access all sides of a building, so keeping areas directly adjacent to your home clear helps us be able to easily work around your home running hose lines, hoisting ladders, etc. Keeping combustible materials stored away from your house will also help avoid any possible exposure should your neighbor’s house have a fire.
Have a Home Fire Safety Plan.
How this helps us: Having a home fire safety plan helps get your family safely out of the home in the event of a fire. The home fire safety plan should identify at least two ways out of every room in your home, the location of fire extinguishers and smoke alarms, and a meeting place for the family to gather once out of the home. By having a plan in place and getting your family out safely, the Fire Department can easily account for everyone on arrival or identify if there is an urgent need to try and locate someone who may still be inside the house.
Practice fire safety and know the burning regulations.
How this helps us: If you’re in an area of our district that allows backyard burning or campfires, these fires can have a significant risk of spreading to adjacent buildings, grass or brush. This can potentially cause a large scale incident if not done in a safe and controlled manner. Knowing the rules of when and what you can burn and the size of fires allowed can significantly help us minimize the risk of uncontrolled fires spreading. If you are unsure of the rules of if, when and what you can burn, then be sure to check our website at gibsonsfire.ca or follow us on Facebook for updates on burning season and complete fire bans, or your local fire department if you live outside of our district. For small campfires currently allowed in the SCRD areas E and F of our district, make sure they are kept to a ½ metre by ½ metre in size, located away from any standing trees or brush, attended at all times, and that you keep a water source adequate for extinguishing the fire on hand.
All of these above items are things that YOU can do to help us in keeping the whole community safe!