If you’re a local farmer, you’ll want to listen up to a warning coming from the Ontario Fire Marshal and local fire departments.
That warning is to smarten up when it comes to fire safety around your property.
Belleville Fire Prevention Officer Dave MacMullen says they’re releasing a number of safety tips, following a string of barn fires all over Ontario and across Quinte as well, because barn fires can be especially devastating.
MacMullen tells Quinte News, one of the best preventative measures farmers can take, is making sure all electrical work is done by a professional.
Other farm fire safety tips include:
- Prohibit smoking in and around farm buildings
- Ensure electrical installations and appliances are kept clean and in good working order
- Ensure electrical work is performed by licensed contractors
- Discontinue the use of extension cords and unsafe wiring
- Perform welding and cutting operations only in areas that are free of combustible materials
- When chopping hay or straw for feed – ensure that all electrical equipment is not exposed to fine dust particles that are created – these types of materials can be ignitable and sometimes explosive
- Store and handle hazardous products according to manufacturers recommendations and applicable regulations
- Mix fertilizers and chemicals carefully in a well-vented area
- Provide and maintain a clear, unobstructed lane way or access to each building and access to any water supplies that might be needed for firefighting
- Refrain from storing animal manure inside structures especially around barn walls/enclosures – they can self-ignite surrounding combustible materials
- For horse barns – have halters and leads readily available by the horse stalls, to quickly lead horses out of the barn