WINNIPEG — Manitoba’s fire commissioner says First Nations could do informal housing inspections for fire hazards without mass evictions.
David Schafer told an inquest examining two fatal fires on Manitoba reserves that regular inspections of band homes could simply look for working smoke detectors and multiple exits in case of fire.
The chief of St. Theresa Point First Nation told the inquest this week he was wary home inspections would result in many of the reserve’s homes being condemned.
Schafer says the inspections don’t have to be that detailed.
He says reserves should also focus on public education that could be tailored to the First Nations and its elders.
The inquest is expected to wrap up today after hearing suggested recommendations.
The inquest is examining a fire in St. Theresa Point in January 2011 that killed two-month-old Errabella Harper.
It’s also investigating a second fire about two months later in God’s Lake Narrows that killed Demus James and his two grandchildren.