CORNWALL –Friday November 7, in recognition of Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week, Jim McDonell, MPP and Ernie Hardeman, MPP (Oxford) joined Matt Hiraishi of the Insurance Bureau of Canada as he donated carbon monoxide detectors to the Cornwall Fire Department.
“Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week occurs at this time of year because this is when people are turning up the furnace and trying to make their homes airtight which increases the risk for carbon monoxide poisoning,” said MPP McDonell. “The best way to make sure that you and your family are safe is by having a working carbon monoxide detector in your home.”
Last year the Ontario Legislature passed the Hawkins Gignac Act, a private members bill introduced by MPP Hardeman, requiring carbon monoxide detectors in Ontario homes and establishing Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week beginning November 1st each year. The Bill was named after a Woodstock family of four that tragically lost their lives after a blocked fireplace exhaust filled the house with carbon monoxide.
“Almost every home in Ontario has something that poses a carbon monoxide threat. Having a detector will help protect families and save lives,” said Hiraishi. “We look forward to working with all stakeholders to continue to raise awareness of the dangers of CO.”
Carbon Monoxide detectors are now required in all homes with a fuel burning appliance or attached garage. They are also required in multi-residential buildings in suites with a fuel-burning appliance or adjacent to a service room or garage.
“Carbon monoxide is extremely dangerous because you can’t see it, taste it or smell it,” said Hardeman. “But you can protect your family by getting fuel burning appliances serviced regularly, checking chimneys and vents and most importantly making sure you have a working detector in your home.”