Frequently Asked Questions 

Are carbon monoxide alarms required in Brantford?

Two firetrucks outside firehall

Yes.  The Ontario Fire Code Section 2.16 requires the installation and maintenance of Carbon Monoxide alarms in all dwellings under the following conditions:

  1. In each dwelling unit containing a fuel-burning appliance, CO alarms are required adjacent to the sleeping areas in each unit.
  2. For a building containing multiple dwelling units and the fuel burning appliance in  a service room, CO alarms are required in the service room and adjacent to each suite in the building that has a common floor/ceiling with the service room.
  3. In each dwelling unit which contains an attached garage or where there are multiple dwellings on the same level as an attached garage, CO alarms are required in each suite that has a common wall or floor/ceiling with the attached garage.

Please note that “fuel-burning appliance” includes but is not limited to – furnaces, refrigerators, clothes dryers, water heaters, boilers, fireplaces, wood stoves, charcoal grills, gas ranges and space heaters, which are fueled by flammable fuels such as: natural gas, propane, heating oil, kerosene, coal, gasoline, wood and charcoal.

Are outdoor fireplaces permitted in the City of Brantford?

We have received numerous telephone calls from homeowners regarding the use of various types of outdoor fireplaces, chimineas, portable fire pits, and fire rings. Products of this type are deemed to be contravening Sec. of the Ontario Fire Code O. Reg 213/07 which states that "Open air burning shall not be permitted unless approved, or unless such burning consists of a small, confined fire, supervised at all times, and used to cook food on a grill or a barbecue."

Bonfires, burning of garden waste/rubbish and recreational fires are not permitted in the City of Brantford.

Please understand that the Brantford Fire Department cannot prohibit the sale of these products as they may be allowed in other jurisdictions.

Can I burn my leaves and brush during Spring/Fall cleanup?

No. The burning of leaves, rubbish or other debris is not permitted within the City of Brantford.

Can I have a campfire in my backyard?

The answer to this is "NO"; the City of Brantford does not allow recreational fires.

Sec. of the Ontario Fire Code O. Reg 213/07 states that, "Open air burning shall not be permitted unless approved, or unless such burning consists of a small, confined fire, supervised at all times, and is used to cook food on a grill or a barbecue." This means that you can use a small-contained fire with a grill to cook food on. However, once the food is cooked the fire must be extinguished.

Do I need permission to use candles at my wedding?

Yes.  The Fire Department must approve all candles and arrangements used in any public hall during a wedding or private party.

How do I arrange a fire safety lecture for my group, workplace or school?

Fire Safety lectures on a number of topics such as fire safety in the home, babysitter safety, how to use fire extinguishers and seniors fire safety can all be arranged by contacting the Fire Prevention Office in writing.

Written requests should be sent by mail to the Brantford Fire Department, 60 Clarence Street, P.O. Box 61, Brantford, ON, N3T 5M3 or faxed to 519.752.7083 or email.

All requests should include the following information:

  • The proposed date and time of the lecture
  • The location of the lecture
  • The number of persons attending and their ages
  • The topic you wish the lecture to be on
  • Indicate whether a TV and DVD player are available
  • A phone number where you can be reached during the day

How do I arrange a tour of the fire station?

To arrange a tour of one of the four fire stations, please call the Platoon Chief at 519-752-4346.

The Fire Department provides firehall tours to preschool children, Brownies and Beavers groups, etc. These tours provide the Fire Department with a valuable opportunity to educate one of the high-risk groups within our community.

During tours, children learn the importance of not playing with matches and lighters, knowing the sound of the smoke alarm and what to do if they hear it, and to "Stop, Drop and Roll' if their clothes catch on fire.

Don't forget to bring along a camera!

How many smoke alarms do I need in my house?

In the City of Brantford, you are required to have a working smoke alarm on every level of your home in compliance with the Ontario Fire Code.

The Ontario Fire Code requires a working smoke alarm to be installed between each sleeping area and the remainder of the dwelling unit, and minimum one on each storey.

Always remember that a smoke alarm should be installed and maintained in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions that accompanied the device. A properly maintained and tested smoke alarm is the best insurance your family can have!

What are your fees?

Open Air Burning Permit  $65.77
File Search Letter  $138.99
Fire Incident Summary Report  $138.99 
Liquor Licence Inspection  $131.53
Liquor Licence Letter  $65.77
Retrofit 9.5 Inspection & Documentation  $197.30
Retrofit 9.8 Inspection & Documentation  $131.53
Wood Stove Inspection & Documentation  $65.77
Temporary Vendor's Permit (Fireworks)  $194.93

Other Inspections not noted are a minimum of $131.53

Fire Route Bylaw

For inclusion in the City of Brantford Fire Route bylaw you must provide a site plan on paper measuring 8 1/2" x 11" showing the location of the building's internal roads and fire hydrants to the Brantford Fire Department. A fee of $172.50+ $22.43(HST) must be paid to the Brantford Fire Department as well.

Selling of Fireworks

Be advised that under Brantford Municipal Code Chapter 520; fireworks cannot be sold in the City of Brantford at any time except on Victoria Day and Canada Day and five calendar days preceding these holidays.

  • The selling of firecrackers is prohibited.
  • The selling of fireworks to persons under 18 years of age is prohibited.

What do I do if I find my child playing with matches or a lighter?

All children have a fascination with fire. They like to watch campfires, fireplaces, candles, etc., but for some, the fascination goes beyond watching. Sometimes it can become a repeated fire setting behaviour!

Each year, hundreds of children are injured in fires started by children playing with matches or lighters. If you feel your child's interest in fire setting is beyond simple curiosity the Brant TAPP-C program offers families help when dealing with child fire setters. If you need assistance, please call the Brantford Fire Department at 519-752-0540 and ask specifically for The Arson Prevention Program for Children (TAPP-C).

What is Retrofit?

There are two main Retrofit Sections of the Ontario Fire Code which landlords will be required to comply with: Retrofit Section 9.5, which deals with low rise residential buildings, any building from a triplex up to and including a six storey building and Retrofit Section 9.8 which deals with duplex dwellings.

The retrofit provisions are based on a minimum level of life safety for occupants of existing buildings and is the responsibility of the owner of the property to ensure compliance with the retrofit regulation and requirements. The owner must also confirm that the property complies with zoning and other applicable bylaws.

What is the best type of smoke alarm?

There is no simple answer to this question. The two types operate on different principles and therefore may respond differently to various conditions. Some advantages to each type are set out below:


  • Fastest type to respond to flaming fires
  • Lowest cost and most commonly sold
  • Some models have a hush or temporary silence feature that allows silencing without removing the battery
  • Some models are available with a long life battery


  • Fastest type to respond to slow smoldering fires and white or grey smoke
  • Less prone to nuisance alarms from cooking

Notwithstanding these differences, to achieve ULC listing, both alarms must be tested to the same standard and meet the same requirements. Photoelectric smoke alarms may respond slightly faster to smoldering fires, while ionization alarms respond slightly faster to flaming fires. Since you can't predict the type of fire that will occur, it is difficult to recommend which is best. Both alarms will detect all types of fires that commonly occur in the home. Installing both types of smoke alarms in your home can enhance fire safety.

Do you have another question we have not answered?

Please call 519-752-0540, or email us.