Posts Tagged ‘barn fires’

barn-fire-6Did you know?

Faulty electrical systems cause approximately 40 per cent of barn fires with a determined cause, making it one of the leading known causes of barn fires.

What can you do?

Regular inspections and maintenance are key to reducing the risk of a barn fire. We recommend that you work with a professional to inspect and monitor your farm buildings.

  • Have your buildings inspected and maintained regularly by a licensed electrical contractor.
  • Develop a preventative maintenance and housekeeping schedule.
  • Work with a professional to monitor the heat conditions of your barn using infrared technologies.
  • Work with your local fire department and insurance company to identify problem areas on your farm, and fix any problem areas identified.
  • Have a plan ready to deal with any emergency.
  • Train your family and employees on what to do if there is a barn fire. Learn how to handle and what to do with livestock, make a list of who to call during and after a fire, and establish a safe meeting point.

Visit ontario.ca/preventfarmfires to find helpful resources, including:

Barn fires can create unique challenges for farmers, including the disposal of large volumes of deadstock. The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) has a regulation that gives you options for deadstock management. These options help to protect water quality, reduce environmental impacts and minimize biosecurity hazards, such as scavenging.

Collection of deadstock by a licensed collector is recognized as the most effective and sustainable disposal method. In emergency situations, you can apply to OMAFRA for an Emergency Authorization for the storage, disposal or transportation of deadstock. These authorizations can be used when emergency conditions exist that make it difficult for you to dispose of deadstock according to the regulation.

For more information and to suggest a different fire prevention device, technology or program that could be listed on our website, contact the Agricultural Information Contact Centre (AICC) at 1-877-424-1300 or ag.info.omafra@ontario.ca.

Visit ontario.ca/farmsafety for other resources and tips for keeping your farm safe. At ontario.ca/deadstock, you can find information on contingency deadstock planning and the regulation.


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Take time to check how safe your barn is.  The National Fire Protection Association has information related to fire, electrical and related hazards. National Fire Prevention Association


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The number of barn fires involving livestock recently has many people thinking about how to prevent fires from happening. Farm and Food Care Ontario has a library of resources on its Farm and Food Care website for livestock farmers and first responders. These include OMAFRA’s Publication 837 Reducing the Risk of Fire on Your Farm and Dealing with the Aftermath of a Pig Barn Fire.

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Recent barn fires in Ontario remind us how important it is to check for fire hazards in our barns. OMAFRA Publication 837 REDUCING THE RISK OF FIRE ON YOUR FARM  discusses leading causes of barn fires, ways to prevent fires and things you can do to reduce the impact of barn fires for all species of livestock.


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Hazardous gases on farms can be found in silos, manure storages, anaerobic digesters, grain bins and improperly ventilated barns – structures that provide a confined space in which gases can accumulate to dangerous levels or deprive the air of enough oxygen to sustain life.

Manure that is stored for a long time undergoes anaerobic decomposition, which produces manure gases. Warm weather and poor ventilation can increase the concentration of these gases. Liquid manure tanks can contain toxic levels of gases or can be devoid of oxygen. High hydrogen sulphide gas levels can also deteriorate exposed concrete above the liquid manure surface.

The OMAFRRA factsheet Hazardous Gases on Agricultural Operations focuses on dangerous gases found around farm operations and the safety precautions required.

Visit the OMAFRA Livestock and Business Tent at the 2015 Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show to see a scale model demonstration of how to stay safe from manure gas hazards. Eight Lane North Middle.

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