Here’s what to do in the event of a high-rise building fire: Ottawa Fire Services

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Ottawa Fire Services is reminding high-rise residents how to stay safe in the event of a fire, following two fires in less than 48 hours at a Donald Street high-rise.

In a fact sheet posted on social media, the fire service says that in most cases it is best to leave the building as soon as possible, but in some cases that is not possible.

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If a person cannot leave their apartment, firefighters advise remaining in the unit until they are rescued or told they can leave.

“Do not try to leave your apartment long after the alarm has gone off,” the post says. “The longer you wait, the greater the risk that dense smoke has spread to stairs and hallways. Your chances of survival are lower.”

Meanwhile, no update was provided on either of the two fires that recently occurred at a high-rise building at 1244 Donald St., one of which was deemed suspicious and is under investigation by police arson detectives.

The building houses a large population of Syrian refugees.

About 50 apartments were affected by smoke and water damage during a fire early Thursday morning, which displaced about 200 people. The third-floor fire left a woman and two children in critical condition from smoke inhalation. Five other residents were taken to hospital with less serious injuries and several more were treated at the scene.

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Deputy Fire Chief Nathan Adams said Friday that most residents had been allowed to return to their units, but the 56 people who live on the third floor, the location where the fire started, will be out of their homes “for an extended period of time.” “

Then on Friday night, firefighters returned to 1244 Donald St., this time for a fire that started on the sixth floor of the building. No injuries were immediately reported and the cause of the fire is under investigation.

The skyscraper’s tenants have been displaced by several other major fires over the years.

In August 2011, an explosion in an electrical panel caused a fire that forced the entire building to seek alternative accommodation. They were away from their homes for two days while a temporary generator was installed to supply power to the building.

In February 2017, a fire that broke out on the ninth floor of the skyscraper displaced hundreds of tenants. Firefighters used ladders to remove some stranded tenants from their balconies.

In September 2004, an electrical fire at 1240 Donald St., the second skyscraper in the Capital Towers development, forced 1,000 people out of their apartments for months.

With files from Andrew Duffy

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