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Enbridge Gas and Augusta Fire Department team up

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Project Zero kicks off: Augusta Fire Department received 144 combination smoke and carbon monoxide alarms last week from Enbridge Gas as part of Project Zero. JOURNAL PHOTO/BURCHELL

MAITLAND - Augusta Fire Department recently received 144 combination smoke and carbon monoxide alarms from Enbridge Gas, which will be given to local residents on low or modest incomes.

This fire department is part of Project Zero, a public education program sponsored by Enbridge Gas, which will provide 7,500 alarms to people in 35 municipalities across Ontario. This year, the gas company has invested $225,000 in Project Zero and over the past 12 years more than 50,000 alarms have been provided to Ontario fire departments.

"Augusta Fire Rescue is proud to partner with Enbridge Gas this year in distributing these combination smoke/CO alarms to our vulnerable residents," says Fire Chief Rob Bowman. "We are excited for this partnership and I'd like to thank Enbridge for donating these alarms to keep our residents safe.

"I would also like to thank CPHC and the South Grenville Food Bank for assisting us in ensuring the alarms are provided to those in the community who need them the most," he added. The chief said his fire prevention officer applied to be part of the program last spring and only recently received confirmation they would be part of the project for 2020. After finding out they had been included they went to CPHC and the food bank for help in identifying the area residents who would fit the program criteria.

The objective of Project Zero is to deliver smoke and carbon monoxide alarms to Ontario communities who need them the most," says Jon Pegg, Ontario Fire Marshall. "It's a program that fire departments can adopt to help educate their communities about the requirement for all Ontario homes to have a CO alarm if they have a fuel-burning appliance or an attached garage."

When properly installed and maintained, combination alarms of this type help provide early warning to safely escape from a housefire or carbon monoxide exposure. Carbon monoxide is a toxic, colourless gas that is the by-product of incomplete combustion of many types of common fuels.

"Carbon monoxide is known as 'the silent killer' for a reason and we have proof that prevention saves lives," says Chief Bowman. We know the best way to prevent exposure is to eliminate it at the source by properly maintaining fuel-burning equipment and that alarms are a critical second line of defense," he explains.

The alarms arrived at Fire Station #1 in Maitland last week and will be given out the first week in November. Enbridge made their official announcement of the partnership Monday afternoon.

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