Contact Procedures for OFMEM Investigators
Under clause 9.(2)(a) of the Fire Protection and Prevention Act, 1997 (FPPA), it is the duty of the Ontario Fire Marshal to investigate the cause, origin and circumstances of any fire or of any explosion or condition that in the opinion of the Fire Marshal might have caused a fire, explosion, loss of life or damage to property.
Fire departments are to report fires to the OFMEM according to the following established criteria:
- All fatal fires or critical injury incidents (24-hour response)
- Explosions (24-hour response)
- Suspected incendiary fires (Monday through Sunday during normal working hours, 08:30 hrs. - 17:00 hrs.)
- Large loss fires - $500,000 and over (08:30 hrs. - 17:00 hrs.)
- Fires of unusual origin or circumstance - unusual fire/smoke spread, or involves circumstances that may result in widespread public concern, e.g., environmental hazard (08:30 hrs. - 17:00 hrs.)
- Multiunit residential occupancies - where fire spread is beyond unit of origin (08:30 hrs. - 17:00 hrs.)
Do not report the following exclusions to the OFMEM:
- Non-fatal vehicle or boat fires
- Obvious single minor arsons - notify local police service.
Requests for investigators will be dealt with in order of priority and subject to the availability of resources. The list above also provides for each category an indication of the hours of the day when the fire department may expect a response from an OFMEM investigator.
Fatal fires/critical injury incidents and explosions should be reported immediately so that an OFMEMEM investigator can be assigned to respond as quickly as possible. All other incidents identified in the established criteria will be handled during regular business hours.
Once reported, an evaluation with reference to the established criteria for notification will be made to determine the urgency of response and level of investigation to be conducted by the OFMEM. Part of the evaluation will include considering the potential benefits for improved fire safety resulting from an investigation.
Depending on the circumstances of the occurrence and the time the notification is received, the manager or supervisor will either assign an investigator for immediate response or defer the response to the next normal work period. Those occurrences requiring an after-hour response will be assigned to one of the investigators situated throughout the province who are on on-call duty. The assignment will be based on the quickest possible response given the distance that must be travelled and the response time expected from the investigator.
Those that do not meet the established criteria for OFMEM investigation, outlined above, will be turned down and referred to the local municipal fire and police services.
After-Hours Calls (between 17:00 hours and 08:30 hours, Monday to Friday, and on weekends and statutory holidays)
For all after-hours calls, the PEOC Duty Officer will evaluate the request with reference to the established criteria for notification. Depending on the circumstances of the occurrence and the time the notification is received, the PEOC Duty Officer will either call an investigator for after-hours response or defer the response to the next normal work period. Should the criteria for an after-hours response be met, the closest available on-call OFMEM investigator will be paged. The investigator has up to 2 hours to respond to the PEOC Duty Officer and then contact the requestor.
An OFMEM manager will be available after hours to deal with unusual circumstances where there is a need to speak with the OFMEM directly.
Those occurrences requiring an after-hour response will be assigned to one of the on-call investigators situated throughout the province. The assignment will be based on the quickest possible response given the distance that must be travelled and the response time expected from the investigator.
During Weekday Office Hours (08:30 hrs. to 17:00 hrs.)
Contact a supervisor or manager at the appropriate OFMEM office number listed below:
OFMEM Midhurst Office
2284 Nursery Road
Telephone: (705) 725-7258, 1-800-565-1842
Fax: 705 725-7259, 1-800-361-5186
During After-Hours (between 17:00 hours and 08:30 hours, Monday to Friday, and on weekends and statutory holidays)
Contact the PEOC Duty Officer at 1-800-461-2281.