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Public Education Programs

Home Safety Program

As part of our commitment to enhancing community safety, Pickering Fire Services aims to check over 3000 homes every summer to ensure each has working smoke alarms on every storey of the home and outside all sleeping areas, and to provide educational materials on the proper location, installation, and maintenance of these life-saving devices, including carbon monoxide alarms. In total, 16 Fire Crews each conduct 200 home safety checks from June until Labour Day.  Fire Prevention follows up with all homeowners who received a smoke alarm or batteries by sending a letter educating them on the laws regarding smoke alarms.  If no one is home during the initial call, the Fire Crew will make a return visit in the hopes of connecting with the homeowner. Whereas most municipal fire education programs stop at the front door, Pickering Fire Services will go a step further by actually testing existing smoke alarms; and in some instances installing a new smoke alarm at no charge in the absence of a working device outside of the home's sleeping area.  If additional home smoke alarms require batteries, Fire Crews will supply and install complimentary new batteries as part of the outreach program.

Adopt a School

Adopt a School is a comprehensive fire safety curriculum program designed for grade one students. It presents six fire safety messages using classroom lessons, activities and home connections. It provides schools with maximum flexibility so that presentations can be taught as stand-alone fire safety units by fire crews and is easily integrated in language arts core curriculum lessons by teachers. Teaching students how to prevent fires and how to respond properly in fire situations are skills students in adopted classes will remember and practice throughout their lives. Our goal is to teach students to recognize and avoid fire risks, helping them lead fuller and more productive lives and reaching beyond the classroom to families in this process.

Learn Not To Burn

Learn Not to Burn is fire safety education program designed for grade three students and is based on information that reflects fires in Pickering. The program includes the video 'Sparky and the Runaway Robot' and props that show the top causes of fires in our community and how they can be prevented. It challenges students to prepare and practice home escape planning with fun rewards for positive action.

Older and Wiser

This program is specifically designed for older adults. Statistics show that adults over age 65 are at the highest risk of being killed or injured in a fire. The program is designed to be delivered by fire departments with the assistance of community groups, home support workers, the media, and friends and families of older adults.

The Arson Prevention Program for Children (TAPP-C)

TAPP-C is an assessment and intervention program aimed at reducing the incidence of youth fire-setting in the community. TAPP-C is based on the premise that for most youth, fire-setting is a behavioural problem that can be corrected with a combination of education and psychological counselling. Fire play is when a child puts themselves or others in danger by playing with fire materials such as matches or lighters. Pickering Fire Services plays a key role in the identification and referral of youth fire-setters. The program focuses on educating children aged 2-17 about appropriate fire safety behaviours. According to the Centre for Addiction & Mental Health, Clarke Division, a follow-up survey of some of these children indicated that 70% have not continued to set fires. Contact us, or Durham Region at 905.436.6754 for more information or to set up an appointment.

Fire Chief for a Day Contest

Each year in October, during fire prevention week, children from grade 1 to grade 6 are invited to enter Pickering's Fire Chief for a day contest. Ballots are distributed to all Pickering schools and can be dropped off at any fire station or McDonalds location in the City. The lucky winner of the draw and a parent/guardian are invited to participate in a variety of activities with the Fire Chief and is sworn in by the Mayor. Activities include touring various fire stations, preparing a home escape plan, meeting Sparky the fire dog, and riding back to school in a fire truck.

Know Fire

Whether you are a student moving into a college or university residence, or just decided that you would like your own place to live, there are a multitude of decisions to be made. Every year we hear about a number of major fires affecting young adults throughout the province. While there are several causes for these fires, you need to be prepared in the event of fire. Know Fire is a fire safety awareness program for students. It includes quick and simple tips that will help save lives, whether you are a student, property owner, or parent.

Presentations we offer include:

  • Fire Safety in the Workplace
  • Durham Race Against Drugs
  • Home Alone Awareness
  • Babysitter Safety Awareness
  • Girl Guides and Scouts Fire Safety Awareness
  • Fire Extinguisher Training

Fire Station tours are available at all Pickering Fire Stations. Tours are limited to 20 children at a time, and must be accompanied by adults.

The Fire Marshal's Public Fire Safety Council website provides pamphlets, information sheets and public service announcements on various fire safety topics such as smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, home escape planning, fire safety for older adults, cooking and electrical fire safety and tips on how to have a fire safe home.

sparky, the dog, and little girlThe Sparky website has fun and easy-to-understand fire prevention games, activities, and information for young children.

Contact us for more information on the Public Education Programs and Presentations that we offer.