When called, firemen in Canada arrive quickly. Click here to know one of the reasons they respond fast to emergencies.
Canadian firemen are very well-trained and prepared. They arrive to the site of an emergency fast but they also count on the preventive system installed in properties: the sprinkler.
Not only in Canada but in the US as well, apartments and houses must have sprinklers. It’s the law. In addition, the sprinklers must be operating properly. Once a year there’s an inspection to check if the fire equipment is operating properly.
In Canada, all rooms in a house have sprinklers. In my building, besides sprinklers installed in every room, there’s also a sound system where the speakers installed on the ceiling can be used to transmit instructions coming from the concierge or from the firemen. There are also smoke detectors that make a loud noise in case of smoke.
I am an Architect and I had done restoration and interior design work in more than 400 (four hundred) houses and apartments in Brazil. I have never seen one single apartment with sprinklers installed! They simply don’t exist! Also in Brazil, smoke detectors are not compulsory, so they simply don’t exist in houses or apartments. Just look to a Brazilian Decor Magazine and try to find a sprinkler or smoke detector in any of the ceilings…
Brazilian’s new buildings have sprinklers installed in public access areas, like lobby and halls. Not inside the units. Unfortunately, sprinklers installed in elevator halls aren’t operative due to layers of paint: Painters are not instructed to let the equipments free and they usually cover them with tint while painting ceilings. There’s no annual inspection to check if sprinklers are in order or not!
The only thing that works fine in Brazil is the “fire tax”. Besides paying a lot of tributes, without any return, there’s one more tax created by Brazilian authorities: the “Taxa de Incêndio” (meaning “fire tax”). This tax was created with the argument that it would be necessary to help equip the firemen corporation. What happens is that the money collected usually “disappears” leaving the public counting only on luck to survive a fire.
Laws to improve home safety should be created and implemented in Brazil. Unfortunately, authorities there are only interest in stuff that can bring money to their pockets, like bribes and high commissions. Laws to protect the public??? For what reason??? “Let’s keep charging fire tax to have money in our pockets” seems to be their mantra.
Needless to say that when fires occur they usually take high proportions bringing fatal victims as well.