Oakville Fire Department kicks off a week of fire prevention education

Families enjoy a day of fire safety games and demonstrations.

Lisa Hoadley

The best way to teach young kids about fire prevention is with a real, live firefighter showing them the ropes. Or in this case, the hoses.

Firefighters led crowds of children through a day of fun and games at their Oakville training centre on the weekend. Kids sprayed water on small fires, crawled through a smokey-room simulator and climbed into the driver’s seat of a fire engine.

Parents watched demonstrations on cooking safety and appliance maintenance. The firefighters displayed a burned clothes dryer to remind onlookers about the possible consequences of poor appliance maintenance.

alt="a clothes dryer burned by a house fire"
A dryer that caused a fire that killed a family of four in 2013. Lisa Hoadley/Kicker

“I worked in a hotel once that had a dryer fire,” said one grandparent. “A guest came over, said he was a fireman and could smell a dryer on fire somewhere in the hotel. We ran to the basement and sure enough, one of the dryers was on fire.”

Up in flames

A demonstration of the dangers of an outdoor oil fryer gave parents a vivid lesson just in time for Thanksgiving Day.

“Cooking is the leading cause of home fires in Oakville, and these appliances have become very popular,” said the announcer. “So we wanted to show you folks what happens when you mix too much oil with too big a bird.”

An outdoor turkey fryer bursts into flames, a common accident around Thanksgiving.  The demonstration was part of a kick-off to Fire Prevention Week.
An outdoor turkey fryer bursts into flames, an unfortunately common accident around Thanksgiving. Lisa Hoadley/Kicker

A firefighter lowered a turkey into the fryer, which began to bubble and steam. The firefighter then added some water, and the cauldron erupted like a volcano, finally exploding into a fix-foot-high column of flames.

Families also enjoyed a free barbecue lunch of hot dogs, cookies, water and coffee sponsored by McDonald’s.


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