Manitoba has introduced changes to the Fires Prevention and Emergency Response Act that would significantly increase maximum fines for offences under the act.
This would include failure to comply with the Manitoba Fire Code, Labour and Immigration Minister Erna Braun announced Nov. 25.
“We believe the current penalties do not reflect the serious life-safety risks that are created when responsibilities with respect to fire safety are not met,” said Braun. “Current penalties under this legislation are much lower than those in other safety laws in Manitoba such as the Workplace Safety and Health Act.”
The proposed changes would also allow the fire commissioner to issue smaller fines, in the form of administrative penalties, to those who have failed to comply with an order issued by the OFC or a fire safety inspector.
When an order is made, it is because there is a fire safety deficiency that needs to be corrected. The new penalties would help ensure that orders are complied with in a timely manner, the minister said, adding that people or corporations that comply with an order that was issued to them will not be affected.
The proposed amendments would increase maximum fines to $125,000 for a first offence and $250,000 for a second offence for an individual. The proposed maximum fines for a corporation would be $250,000 for a first offence and $500,000 for a second offence.
For more information on fire safety and the Manitoba Fire Code, visit www.firecomm.gov.mb.ca.
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