Statement from Chief Kevin Foster, President, the Ontario Association of Fire Chiefs
AJAX, ON, May 26, 2012
AJAX, ON, May 26, 2012 /CNW/ - On behalf of Fire Chiefs across Ontario I
want to extend our deepest condolences to the family and friends of
those who perished and those who were injured, including two local
firefighters, in the fire at Place Mont Roc Retirement Residence in
Hawkesbury last evening.
This incident is made even more tragic in that it occurred less than 24
hours after a Coroner's Inquest into the death of four seniors in
Orillia called for retroactive installation of sprinklers in vulnerable
occupancies like retirement homes. The fourth such Inquest since 1980
to do so.
The two fatalities and injuries in a non-sprinklered retirement home
further identifies the necessity to mandate this important improvement
as soon as possible for the protection of the occupants and the fire
fighters who respond to these incidents. Earlier this year the
government announced a Technical Advisory consultation for vulnerable
occupancies with a targeted completion of next summer. Much work has
already been completed and the OAFC is hopeful that government
recognizes the urgency to expedite the completion of the project and
revises the target for implementation of the results prior to the end
of this calendar year.
In the meantime, the OAFC will continue to work with Ontario fire
services and their firefighters, the Office of the Fire Marshal and the
government to help improve fire safety for Ontario's care occupancies.
The Ontario Association of Fire Chiefs represents the chief fire
officers of the 462 municipal fire departments in the Province of
Ontario. These Chiefs Officers are ultimately responsible, by statute,
for the management and delivery of fire, rescue, and emergency response
to the 13 million residents of Ontario.