CO Detectors Required in All Homes
(December 15, 2014) Today Simcoe-Grey MPP Jim Wilson and Oxford MPP Ernie Hardeman joined Doug DeRabbie from the Insurance Bureau of Canada to put additional carbon monoxide detectors in the homes of Wasaga Beach residents and to raise awareness that they are needed in all homes.
"You can't see, smell or taste carbon monoxide; the only way to know if this deadly gas is in your home is by having a detector," said Wilson. "I want to thank the Insurance Bureau of Canada for making this lifesaving donation to help protect the people of my riding."
The Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) made the donation of carbon monoxide detectors to the Wasaga Beach fire department, as part of their campaign to raise awareness about the need for carbon monoxide detectors in all homes with a fuel burning appliance or an attached garage. The Insurance Bureau has already donated approximately 2,500 detectors to Ontario fire departments.
"Despite the serious threat of carbon monoxide poisoning, many Canadians do not have CO detectors in their home," said DeRabbie. "We thank MPP Ernie Hardeman for his leadership and perseverance to make CO detectors mandatory in all homes in Ontario. Imposing the installation of CO detectors is a wise investment that will help keep families safe at a minimal cost."
In December 2013, Hardeman's private members' bill to require carbon monoxide detectors in all homes received Royal Assent, the final step in becoming law. The bill was named the Hawkins Gignac Act, in memory of a Woodstock family that was killed by carbon monoxide poisoning due to a blocked vent on their fireplace. Over the last 15 years, 250 Ontarians have died from accidental carbon monoxide poisoning.
Although it had unanimous support in the Legislature the bill had to be introduced five times and took five years to pass. The government recently created the regulations necessary to establish standards for detectors, fully implementing the law.
"Carbon Monoxide poisoning is the leading cause of accidental poisoning deaths in North America, but many of these tragedies can be prevented by installing a CO detector," said Hardeman. "It is particularly important in the winter months to ensure your family is protected by making sure vents aren't blocked and that you have a functioning carbon monoxide detector."
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In the above photo: Wasaga Beach Fire Chief Mike McWilliam, Wasaga Beach Deputy Chief Wes Higgins, Mayor Brian Smith, Deputy Mayor Nina Bifolchi, Councillor Sylvia Bray, Councillor Bonnie Smith and Councillor Bill Stockwell