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Aug. 29, 2017
For Immediate Release

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Waterloo – Wilfrid Laurier University will facilitate live fire safety demonstrations during Orientation Week activities at the university’s Brantford and Waterloo campuses. The demonstrations, organized by Laurier’s Safety, Health, Environment and Risk Management department (SHERM) together with Laurier’s Students’ Union, Waterloo Fire Rescue and the Brantford Fire Department, are designed to teach students about fire safety and emergency procedures.

In Waterloo, room burn demonstrations and kitchen grease fire demonstrations will take place Sept. 5 at 5 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. on the Northdale campus.

In Brantford, a room burn demonstration will run Sept. 6 in the Post House parking lot at 6 p.m.

During the room burn demonstration at both campuses, firefighters will set fire to a single room made up of typical residential construction materials, bedroom furniture, and a working smoke alarm. Firefighters will discuss how rapidly a fire can destroy a room, the importance of having an evacuation plan and following fire alarm procedures, and the necessity of having working smoke alarms.

“In a fire, seconds count. Half of home fire deaths result from fires reported at night between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m. when most people are asleep,” said Scott Hardwick, fire prevention officer, Brantford Fire Department. “Smoke alarms can alert people to a fire before it spreads, giving everyone enough time to get out.”

The kitchen grease fire demonstration at Laurier’s Waterloo campus will be hosted in Waterloo Fire Rescue’s kitchen fire safety demonstration trailer. Firefighters will demonstrate how to properly extinguish a grease fire and emphasize the importance of never putting water on a grease fire.

“The room burn and cooking trailer demonstrations show students how quickly a fire spreads, the importance of working smoke alarms and knowing what to do if a fire occurs,” said John Percy, public education officer, Waterloo Fire Rescue. “The cooking trailer demonstrates the correct and incorrect techniques of extinguishing a pot-on-the-stove fire.”

“This is an invaluable opportunity for Laurier to teach first-year students about the importance of practicing fire safety,” said Philip Teskey, emergency management and fire safety officer at Laurier. “We appreciate the support of our partners at Waterloo Fire Rescue, the Brantford Fire Department, the Students’ Union, the Department of Residence, Physical Resources and the generous contributions of Thomasfield Homes Ltd. who donated the building materials and KW Glass Systems Inc. who donated the plexiglass.”

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