Hamilton firefighters are asking residents to be mindful of fire safety after Wednesday's heavy snowfall.

Many fire hydrants will be buried in snow banks after the storm. When clearing snow from driveways and sidewalks, residents should also clear the area around fire hydrants to ensure easy access for firefighters.

“A delay caused by a hydrant that is buried in a snow drift can significantly impact efforts to save lives and minimize property damage,” Claudio Mostacci, public information officer with the fire department, said in a statement.

In addition to driveways and sidewalks, exit doors, stairways and fire escapes should also be free of snow to ensure an unobstructed exit during an emergency.

Residents with direct vent appliances, such as furnaces and some natural gas water heaters, are asked to check their vent pipes and remove all snow from around the pipes.

To prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, residents should avoid warming up their cars or snow blowers by letting the engine run in an attached garage. During a power outage, a portable generator should only be used outdoors and placed at a place where fumes will not enter the building.

Flashlights and chemical light sticks are preferred over candles during a power outage. However, if you use candles, do not leave a burning candle unattended. Place the candle in a secure older protected by a glass chimney and away from all combustibles.

A working smoke alarm is required by law to be installed on every floor in your home.

For more information on fire safety, residents can contact the city's fire prevention division at 905-546-2424 ext. 1380 or visit its website at www.hamilton.ca/fire