North Bay Fire & Emergency Services
With a chill in the air this Victoria Day weekend, die-hard campers and cottage goers may trek into the wild regardless of any rainy-day rumbling. Before you pack all that gear, North Bay Fire and Emergency Services would like to give you a few pointers for a safe, fun-filled weekend.
While you may be tempted to pull out the portable heater, ensure that fuel-burning space heaters are only used in well ventilated areas. Every year, unsuspecting campers and cottagers are seriously injured – and, in some tragic cases, die – due to carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning as a result of improper use.
At the Cottage and Campsite
While you are packing for the cottage or campsite, take along a few simple tips – and enjoy the great outdoors. Make safety second nature.
• check burners and exhaust systems of all appliances for blockages or obstructions such as insects, rodent nests, rust fragments or other debris that could lead to dangerous levels of CO;
• have propane or gas-fired appliances such as stoves, refrigerators and heaters inspected and/or repaired by a certified technician;
• replace batteries in your CO and smoke alarms and test them to ensure they are working properly. A working smoke alarm is required by law on every level of the cottage and outside all sleeping areas.
• clean your barbecue and check for any fuel leaks by applying a 50/50 solution of water and dish soap; and
• keep in mind barbecues are approved for outdoor use only and should not be stored inside any structure.
• ensure open-fires are permitted by local and provincial authorities. Clean up the fire pit and cut back any branches or brush that may have grown too close; and
• use only paper or kindling when starting a fire at your campsite. Be sure the fire is in a safe, open area, well away from flammables and other natural combustibles. Never leave a fire unattended.