Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to speak today to draw attention to fire prevention week, and to take advantage of this opportunity to encourage the public to take the time to think about fire prevention, both at home and at work.
As you know, hundreds of lives are lost every year in fires of various types, but unfortunately most deaths by fire are related to fires in the home. This means that, if we are to improve this situation and reduce deaths by fire as much as possible, more emphasis than ever must be placed on prevention and on continuing to raise public awareness.
The discovery of fire goes far back into the history of human kind. Fire is a part of our everyday lives, and will surely be around for a very long time to come. Although, most of the time, fire seems to be under control, we must be vigilant and not let down our guard. Incidents involving fire can happen so quickly, and their consequences, both material and personal, can be very serious.
One of the best ways of saving lives if there is a fire is to install smoke detectors. A properly maintained smoke detector can, without a doubt, prevent terrible human tragedies and, moreover, detectors are inexpensive and easily installed.
Whether in a house or apartment or in the work place, these devices are essential to our safety, and I encourage people who do not have smoke detectors to get them as soon as possible, and people who do have them to check them to ensure they are operating properly. During fire prevention week, whose theme this
year is "let's hear it for fire safety: test your detectors", we all need to do our bit to improve our collective safety.
This coming Saturday, October 12, has been designated as the day to pay tribute to fire fighters. On behalf of the public, I would like to thank all full time and part time fire fighters for their excellent work and for all of the services they render to society.
We take their presence for granted, and all too often lose sight of the fact that they frequently put their lives on the line to save someone else. I want them to know that we are grateful and that they have every right to be proud of what they do. It is not always easy to serve the public. It demands self-discipline, determination, and professionalism. I encourage our fire fighters to keep up the good work. Our heartfelt thanks for the excellent work they do on our behalf.
In closing, I would like to invite everyone to take part in the various activities that will be held during the week and to keep in mind that it is important to be prevention-conscious all year long.