Ontario speeds up mandatory sprinklers in seniors' homes after L’Isle-Verte fire
Health minister wants to "accelerate the mandatory installation of the sprinklers", curently slated for 2025
Ontario is looking to speed up the phase-in of sprinkler systems in nursing and retirement homes following the deadly blaze that destroyed a nursing home in eastern Quebec.
Ontario introduced new regulations last year to require all nursing homes built before 1998, which were previously exempt from sprinkler regulations, to install sprinkler systems, but said they could take five to 10 years to complete the retrofits.
Health Minister Deb Matthews says the fire that killed at least five and left 30 others missing in Quebec has everyone wondering what more can be done to prevent similar tragedies.
Matthews says one thing she wants to do is go back and look at accelerating the mandatory installation of the sprinklers.
Sprinklers are being installed in older long-term care homes operated by the Ministry of Health as it rebuilds its facilities, but that program is scheduled to last until 2025.
Matthews says she wants to move quicker than that to get the sprinklers installed.
Investigators in L’Isle-Verte, Quebec say the cause of Thursday's blaze is unclear and police say nothing is being ruled out.