Bracebridge Fire Department details how to keep your home safe this winter

With more snow expected to fall in Muskoka this week, the Bracebridge Fire Department wants to make sure your home is safe – indoors and outside.

Fire Chief Murray Medley says the most important thing to do is to check your smoke and CO alarms.

He suggests going to Emergency Management Ontario’s (EMO) website and creating a 72-hour emergency survival kit. In an emergency like a blackout, EMO says you need to have access to everything you or your family would need to survive for at least the next three days. That includes things like food, bottled water, a flashlight with extra batteries, a radio and a first-aid kit.

To make life easier for emergency services, Medley says to keep your driveway and walkways clear at all times. He adds that you need to make sure the emergency number at the end of the driveway is visible too. “If you can’t find you, we can’t help you,” he says.

While shovelling, he says to walk around your house and make sure snow is cleared away from all vents. Allowing snow to build up on outside vents could lead to carbon monoxide filling your home. A blocked vent could cause your heating system to shut down as well.  

With people spending much more time at home this winter, space heaters may be a popular item for people looking to warm up. Medley says if you’re setting one up, don’t use an extension cord. Only use the cord attached to the unit. He says to keep flammable items at least three feet away from them as well.

“It all goes back to common sense,” Medley says.

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