Autumn Fire Safety

The Township Fire and Emergency Services Department wants to ensure that all residents are safe throughout the four seasons. In the autumn, there are special challenges to keeping resident's safe and protecting property. Special consideration should be made to fire safety outside the House, Fireplaces and Woodstoves, and around Space Heaters.

Outside the House

  • Never park your car or truck over a pile of leaves. The heat from the vehicle's catalytic converter or exhaust system can ignite the leaves below. The resulting fire could destroy your vehicle.
  • Flammable liquids should not be stored in inside the home or in an attached garage or shed. This includes any unused fuel still in the fuel tank. Store this equipment away from your home or drain excess fuel out of the tank before storing. This simple safety precaution will help prevent accidental fires from escaping fuel vapours.
  • Remove fuel from lawn mowers before storing them for winter.
  • Prune back trees, and rake up leaves and debris. If you live in an open area with a lot of natural vegetation, consider creating a defensible fire zone around your home. Prune the bottom branches from trees and remove shrubs and trees within 20 feet of your home.
  • Don’t store cardboard boxes, paper or other flammable materials in the backyard. These materials provide ready fuel for a fire and all it takes is one spark.

Fireplaces and Woodstoves

  • Have heating appliances serviced and chimney flues examined for defects.
  • Have fireplaces and fireplace dampers checked.
  • Fireplaces should be equipped with an appropriate screen or glass enclosure to prevent sparks from flying out.
  • Wood burning stoves should be examined and the flue and chimney checked for creosote build-up. Creosote is a deposit from smoke that can build up in a chimney and can start a fire.
  • Use only seasoned woods, and avoid soft woods like Pine, etc.
  • Never use a flammable liquid to start a fireplace.
  • Never overload the hearth with wood or artificial logs, the resulting fire may be too large for the unit.
  • Put all ashes outdoors and away from the house in a metal container.

Space Heaters

  • Make sure that any space heaters are surrounded by at least three feet of empty space.
  • Never place clothing or any other objects on a space heater to dry.
  • Do not place space heaters near furniture or drapery.
  • Turn space heaters off when you leave the house or go to bed.
  • Avoid storing any combustible items near heaters.
Municipal Contacts
Chief Administrative Officer (CAO)
Mary Ellen Greb
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 225
Email: cao@swox.org
 
Clerk
Lisa VanderWallen
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 223
Email: clerk@swox.org
 
Treasurer
Diane Larder
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 224
Email: dlarder@swox.org
 
Revenue Officer
Stacy Weicker
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 222
Email: revenueofficer@swox.org
 
Chief Building Official (CBO)
Aaron Stewardson
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 229 
Email: cbo@swox.org
Building Inspector
Jason Brunt
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 233
Email: jbrunt@swox.org
 
Administrative Assistant - Building
Deb Dawson
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 228
Email: building@swox.org
 
Development Planner
Community and Strategic Planning Office,
County of Oxford

Ron Versteegen,
Phone: 519-539-9800 Ext. 3214
Email: rversteegen@oxfordcounty.ca
 
By-Law Enforcement Officer
Jason Brunt
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 233
Email: jbrunt@swox.org
 
Drainage
Jason Brunt
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 233
Email: jbrunt@swox.org
 
Treasurer
Diane Larder
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 224
Email: dlarder@swox.org
 
Revenue Officer
Stacy Weicker
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 222
Email: revenueofficer@swox.org
 
Payroll Administrator
Brooke Crane
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 226
Email: payroll@swox.org
 
Administrative Assistant
Laura Pickersgill
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 221
Email: generaladmin@swox.org
 
Fire Chief & CEMC
Jeff VanRybroeck
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 257
Email: fireChief@swox.org
 
Works Superintendent
Bill Freeman
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 260
Email: bfreeman@swox.org
 
Foreman
Larry Hughes
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 258
Email: lhughes@swox.org
 
Lead Hand
Adam Prouse
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 258
Email: aprouse@swox.org
 
Chief Administrative Officer
Mary Ellen Greb
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 225
Email: cao@swox.org
 
Clerk
Lisa VanderWallen
Phone: 519-485-0477 Ext. 223
Email: clerk@swox.org
 
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