Tag Archives: safety

Fire Extinguisher Tips

Not very many people have been properly trained in how to use a fire extinguisher. You see them everywhere you go: your workplace, your school, hopefully your home, and any public building, such as shops and restaurants. You may have an idea of how they work, but in the event that you needed to use one would you light up or sizzle out?

Below, we discuss the importance of knowing how to use a fire extinguisher, some tips to remember, and some additional training you can take if you would like to learn more.

Why It’s Important

This seems as it should be common sense. Fires pose a real danger during our day-to-day lives, whether it be at home, school, work or in public. Knowing how to react and being properly trained could mean the difference between life and death in a situation you never thought you would be in.


PASS is an acronym that makes it easier to remember the four main steps to using a fire extinguisher. If you are ever in a situation where you need to use one, follow these steps:

P: Pull the pin that unlocks the operating lever.

A: Aim low.

S: Squeeze the lever above the handle.

S: Sweep the nozzle from side to side.

Things To Know

Different types of fires require different types of fire extinguishers. Fires range of Class A to Class D, as well as a Class K.

Class A: these fires involve ordinary combustibles such as wood, cloth, or paper.

Class B: these fires involve flammable liquids, such as gasoline, oil, paints, etc.

Class C: these fires involve electrical equipment, such as power tools, fuse boxes, wiring, etc.

Class D: these fires involve combustible metals, such as magnesium or sodium.

Class K: these fires involve cooking oils used in commercial cooking equipment.

It is important to recognize what type of fire you are dealing with, as treating a fire with the wrong extinguisher may only cause more problems.

Training/Classes Available

For anyone interested in becoming more knowledgeable and prepared for any situation that may require a fire extinguisher, there are plenty of training courses and information sessions available.

These courses are great for anyone, but would be particularly important for anyone working in a public place with a higher fire hazard rate, such as a restaurant kitchen, for an individual working in a school where children’s lives may be at stake in the case of a fire, or for parents or individuals who wish to keep an extinguisher in their home.

Cool Down

Knowing how to react in the event of a fire, and how to properly use a fire extinguisher, could make a big difference for the people and structures involved. Share these tips with your family members, coworkers, and friends to ensure that all of your loved one’s and acquaintances are properly equipped to deal with any fire related emergencies they may face.

Help keep yourself and others safe; spread the word like wildfire.

Keeping Your Home Safe In The Winter

It is that time of year again, the Canadian winter we all know and love. Amidst prepping their cars and their closets for the upcoming season, there is one thing that most people forget to consider: their homes.

Your home, aside from being your largest investment, is first and foremost the shelter that keeps you and your family warm throughout the winter. What a lot of people don’t realize is that along with winter come a variety of different problems and hazards that can present themselves within your home.

Below, we’ve outlined some of these potential problems and hazards, and possible solutions, to help in keeping your home safe in the winter.

Potential Problems

  • Frozen Pipes

Frozen pipes are quite common once the temperature drops below zero, and not only are they an inconvenience, but can also caused burst pipes, which are a lot more troublesome and a lot harder to repair. Try these tricks to help keep your homes pipes from freezing.

  • Fireplace Issues

It is important to ensure your chimney has been inspected and is in good working order for the upcoming winter season, as moisture from snow from last winter may have caused a variety of problems for your chimney.

Any home that has a fireplace should also be properly equipped with working smoke detectors and an up-to-date fire extinguisher. While we hope neither of these ever need to be used, they are important to have in the event of any fire related emergency.

  • Heat Related Hazards

Winter is a time of space heaters, electric blankets, and everything else designed to keep us warm. While these products certainly do us a service on the colder days, it is important to remember that they can also come with certain risks.

When using products like this always make sure to take caution. Keep space heaters away from anything sensitive to heat or flammable; the best place is the center of a room. With products like heated blankets or sheets, always ensure to turn them off when you are not using them, and especially when you are leaving the house.


Aside from prevention techniques, the best assurance is insurance. Whether it is your primary residence you are concerned about, or perhaps a rental property, having a proper insurance policy is the best way to protect yourself and your home. Insurance policies cover a variety of situations and are easily tailored to each individuals situation, meaning that you can find the perfect policy to suit you and your property.

What Happens If I Lose My Will?

Whether you have a substantial estate, or simply a few sentimental items, having a will is crucial if you want to dictate how your possessions will be distributed when you are gone. Without a will, you are considered to have died “intestate” and the provincial law then dictate the division of your estate.

Perhaps you have lost your will, you are preparing to make a will, or maybe you are wondering whether or not you should make copies of the one you already have.

In any circumstance, the first and foremost thing to know is that a will being lost does not automatically invalidate it. A will becomes invalid only if and when the will maker revokes the will intentionally.

There are a few different factors to consider when a will has been lost, and different processes depending on the situation. Below, we’ve outlined a few of the factors that need to be taken into consideration, and what effect they will have on the estate.

Possession of the Will

If a will is seemingly lost, but was in the will makers’ possession immediately before their death, the assumption is that the will was revoked intentionally. This is difficult to disprove, and in this circumstance, the estate will usually be considered “intestate”.

If the Will is missing but was not in the possession of the will maker before their death, the deceased’s executor will need to find a photocopy of the original.

Copies of the Will

Often, if a person had their Will drawn up at a lawyers office, the lawyers office will keep the original and the individual will take home a photocopy, usually containing the information of the lawyer’s office that holds the original. (Your accountant may also be involved in this process).

If the original is still unable to be found, the photocopy, along with supporting affidavits from the estates executor and the lawyer who prepared the document are more often than not sufficient in proving the photocopy is the deceased’s original Will.

A photocopy is not to be mixed up with a true copy, where a photocopy contains copies of the necessary signatures, a true copy only contains the names of the deceased and the witnesses in quotes. True copies are difficult to have proven as originals.

No Will and No Copy

It is possible, still, to prove the wishes the deceased had laid out in their last Will, even without the original or a copy, through a Court application. The deceased’s family and friends must go before a judge and show evidence supporting their claims of what the deceased’s wishes were for the estate. If no proof is evident, the estate will go into intestacy.


If no Will or proof of last wishes can be found, the estate becomes intestate, in which case the provincial government will decide how your estate is to be divided. There are various ways in which they will typically divide an estate.

  • If you have a spouse and no children, the estate will pass to the spouse
  • If you have a spouse and children, the estate will be divided amongst them
  • If you have no spouse and no children, the estate will pass to your parents
  • If you have no parents, the estate will be divided amongst your siblings, and so on…

Will You?

If you have a Will, you have possessions, money, property, etc. that you want to be given to specific people upon your passing. It is important to keep your Will, or at least a photocopy of it, in a safe place that will be easily found by your executor when the time comes.

If not, you risk having your estate divided up in a way that you have not decided on.

Preparing Your Vehicle For Winter Driving

Winter driving is inevitable in most parts of the country. With the winter season comes plenty of snow and ice, which hinder the driving conditions we are faced with, often resulting in more accidents. These conditions call for increased attention, caution, and preparation to help you stay safe on the road.

Driving in these conditions can be quite intimidating, especially for new drivers. The good news is that there are plenty of things you can do before the snow falls to help prepare your vehicle for winter driving. These preparations, along with safe and condition-appropriate driving, should help you skate through the winter driving season without a problem.

  1. Have Winter Tires Installed

Winter tires should be the first thing you consider when the seasons start to change. A good set of winter tires will combat the snow, ice, and temperature exponentially better than even the best all season tires.

You will have increased traction in the snow, your stopping time will be severely shortened, and you will have more all around control over the vehicle’s handling.

  1. Create an Emergency Kit to Keep in Your Car

While you should have an emergency kit in your car all year round, it is especially important to have during the colder months. If you end up in a situation where you are going to be stuck in your car for an extended period of time, an emergency kit can make all the difference.

Include items such as a blanket, extra hats and mittens, candles, food, and first aid equipment.

  1. Buy Extra Washer Fluid to Keep in Your Car

It’s not news that driving on slushy winter roads means going through washer fluid faster than a kid goes downhill on a crazy carpet.

If you were to run out of washer fluid, you would not make it very far, at least safely, attempting to squint through the thick brown slush building up on your windshield.

Swap out your old wiper blades for a fresh new set, and always keep an extra jug of washer fluid in the backseat or trunk of your car for these lovely, dirty days.

  1. Have Your Car Taken In For Maintenance

Now, it’s important to keep your car maintained all year round, but at this time of year it is even more so. Making sure your car is in tip-top shape can help you avoid any unwanted situations.

  • Get your brakes checked – with the roads being slippery, being able to stop quickly is even more important
  • Ensure you are using the proper oil for winter – thinner oil (such as 5W30) circulates better in colder weather than thicker oil (such as 10W30) does
  • Ensure your battery is in good condition – the cold temperatures are hard on a car’s battery, and having a car that won’t start is about as useful as having no car at all
  • General Maintenance – make sure everything is in good working condition, such as your lights, heating system, etc.

Slow It Down

While these preparations make your car ready for winter, you need to be ready for winter as well. Prepare yourself mentally and physically for the changes in driving conditions. Drive slower, give yourself more time to get places, stay alert, dress appropriately for the weather, and only get in the car when you need to.

Here Comes The Sun: Benefits of Enlarging Basement Windows

Are you building a new house? Renovating your current one? Or maybe you flip houses for a living?

Whichever one of these you said yes to, there is one thing you all have in common: deciding what to do with the basement.

In the past, basements were typically used for storage, mechanical equipment, or the laundry room, and were often left unfinished. Nowadays, however, basements are being used for anything and everything, from bedrooms, family rooms, game rooms, and even full on suites for guests or renters.

With basements now being used as everyday living space, you’ll want to eliminate the image of dark, damp and unwelcome that the word basement typically equates to. One great way to do this is by letting in as much natural light as possible. Do this by adding more windows or enlarging the ones that are already there.

Aside from creating a comfortable, inviting space, and refreshing the look of your basement, there are a few other benefits of enlarging basement windows that you may not realize.

Safety, Safety, Safety

The most significant benefit of having larger basement windows is the safety factor. In the event of an emergency, such as a fire, having larger windows create an accessible and easy exit.

New building codes often consider larger windows, known as egress windows, a requirement if the basement is going to be used as a living space.


Enlarging the windows in your basement can significantly increase the property value of your home. Firstly, by bringing any basement rooms you have up to legal code, you can then include them in the calculation of your homes square footage. Secondly, adding safety features as well as more appealing design and more inviting space to your home will attract the attention of buyers.

Both of these factors will help raise your assessed property value, thereby increasing your equity or your potential selling price.

Looks Matter Too

Lastly, adding these larger windows and exterior window wells to your basement can give you a new canvas for adding to the design style of your home.

The type of windows you choose and how you build the well can add personality to the outside of your home. You can use different types of stone, bricks, or wood to design a beautiful window well to enhance your homes curb appeal.

Size Does Matter After All

As you can see, enlarging the windows in your basement offers a variety of benefits, ranging from safety code features to your own personal design touch.

Whether you are remodeling an investment property for resale or are working on renovating or building your own home, adding larger windows to your basement should be at the top of your to-do list.