Ministry of the
Solicitor General

Maintenance Trucks May Pose a Fire Hazard

Communiqué du commissaire des incendies

Maintenance Trucks May Pose a Fire Hazard

Communiqué 2013-11

June 28, 2013

The Office of the Fire Marshal (OFM) and Transport Canada have investigated a number of fires that involved the ignition of various truck models used for winter road maintenance (i.e. snowploughing and salting). The trucks in question were manufactured by Sterling Trucks, a subsidiary of Daimler Trucks.

Each fire occurred while the truck was parked overnight in a winter road vehicle maintenance building and spread to the remainder of the building, resulting in significant property loss. At this time, it is believed that advanced electrical component corrosion led to an overheating condition and subsequent ignition within the unattended truck’s engine compartment.

The OFM and Transport Canada are monitoring the situation with respect to fires involving Sterling trucks and ask fire departments to report any similar fires to which they respond in the future or to which they responded in the past. Reporting such incidents will assist in assessing the need for further action.

During one of the OFM maintenance truck fire investigations, it was discovered that the truck maintenance building contained multiple employee sleeping areas that were used on a 24/7 basis during the winter months. The investigation revealed that some of these sleeping areas were not equipped with working smoke alarms.

The OFM is bringing this matter to the attention of fire departments to raise awareness that such a situation may exist within their respective municipality. The OFM asks fire departments to consider including this type of facility in their fire inspection program to ensure that appropriate fire safety measures are taken in accordance with Ontario Fire Code requirements.

To report an incident, fire departments should use the contact information on the next page. Fire departments’ cooperation is much appreciated. 


Contact information to report maintenance truck fire


During weekday office hours:
Monday to Friday,
8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Duty Supervisor
Fire Investigations Services,
Midhurst Regional Office
Office of the Fire Marshal
1-800-565-1842 (toll free)

After hours:
Outside weekday office hours, and including weekends and holidays
Duty Officer
Provincial Emergency Operations Centre
Emergency Management Ontario
1-866-314-0472 (toll free)

Transport Canada

Jeremy Hamilton
Defect Investigations
1-800-333-0510 (toll free)