The Ontario Government unveiled valuable resources to help farmers reduce the risk of barn fires this winter – the time when most barn fires occur.
The Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management tracks fire incidents in Ontario, and based on theirdata, there are approximately 80 reported fires involving barns housing livestock each year.
These fires cause an estimated loss of $18.5 million each year.
Approximately 40 per cent of all barn fires are caused by faulty electrical systems.
Jacquie Hill-Bower, Fire Prevention Inspector with the Municipality of Port Hope Fire and Emergency Services, tells us more.
Hill-Bower adds that small rodents don’t help the situation.
She adds that there are some good housekeeping practices to keep in mind when it comes to barns, like developing a preventative maintenance and housekeeping schedule and have buildings inspected and maintained regularly by a licensed electrical contractor.
Hill-Bower adds that it’s important to store hay properly to prevent barn fires.
Hill-Bower ended by saying it’s important to provide proper access to your property for the fire department.
Fires in farm buildings are tragic incidents that can result in the unnecessary loss of animals and extensive property damage.
These devastating and preventable events underscore the need for owners and operators to identify and eliminate potential fire risks in all farm buildings.
In 2018, 24 barn fires in Ontario involved dead-stock managed under the regulations.
This compares to a total of 15 in 2017, and 22 in 2016.