Canadian Contractor

FIRE PREVENTION WEEK – On-site fire extinguishers: yes, you have to have them


October 5, 2021
By Alec Caldwell

In honour of national Fire Prevention Week, we are re-posting archived content addressing issues around fire prevention on jobsites and fire-safe building designs. Don’t miss our special video presentation by JELD-WEN discussing fire-safe window and door designs dropping later this week. – ed.

Very few professional renovators give much attention to the issue of fire safety on the jobsite. Did you know that you are required to have fire extinguishers on your site, in locations that are plainly labelled, and that everyone on your site has to know how to use them?

Fire safety is an important area to consider when carrying out renovation work in a homeowner’s home.

Not only are there laws that require you to take precautions for fire safety, being prepared will also look good on you. Your homeowner client will notice your commitment to detail and remember why they hired you in the first place.

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Keep in mind that, under current regulations, all job/work sites (including those for home renovations) must have fire extinguishers readily accessible. The location of the fire extinguishers have to be adequately marked by signage, so they can be easily located by anyone on your site.

Everyone, including sub trades who might be required to use this equipment, have to be trained how to use those extinguishers. The fire extinguishers themselves must, of course, carry certain standards by the Underwriters’ Laboratories of Canada 4A40BC rating. And, with winter coming, they have to be protected from physical damage and from freezing.

If you need more information on these and other regulations, you should check them out under your province’s Occupational Health and Safety Act.

Failing to pay attention to fire safety, and fire extinguishers, can leave you liable to prosecution under the Act. If you need basic knowledge in tackling small fires, you can get this online through CARAHS.

Originally posted Oct. 22, 2014