July 20th, 2024

Montreal fire department carries out hundreds of inspections after deadly March blaze

By The Canadian Press on October 24, 2023.

Montreal's fire department says it carried out 460 targeted inspections through September as part of a push to secure potentially hazardous buildings following a March fire in Old Montreal that killed seven people. Firefighters climb a ladder at the scene of a fire in Old Montreal, Thursday, March 16, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes

Montreal’s fire department says that since a fire in Old Montreal killed seven people in March, it has carried out 460 targeted inspections as part of a push to secure potentially hazardous buildings.

The operation initially focused on heritage buildings in the city core but was later expanded to include other high-risk buildings and buildings subject to citizen complaints, which tripled following the March 16 blaze.

The fire department says it identified 2,042 elements that did not conform to the fire safety rules and issued 13 notices to property owners demanding immediate changes.

The 460 targeted inspections through the end of September were in addition to 5,292 regular building inspections that the fire department carried out between January and September.

Fire department assistant director Chantal Bibeau said today the operation is part of an updated fire prevention strategy that takes into account such challenges as an aging population and building stock.

The Montreal police department announced in August that it had begun a criminal investigation into the deadly fire.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 24, 2023.

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