Publicis cooks up a fire safety campaign for Toronto

Who: Toronto Fire Services, Toronto Community Housing (TCHC) and Publicis.

What: “Fire Happens Fast,” a new campaign illustrating the dangers of unattended cooking.

When & Where: Running through Nov. 4, the campaign includes billboards, transit shelters, geo-targeted digital ads and social media posts.

Why: Cooking is the leading cause of residential fires, accounting for 18% of all structure loss fires in Ontario between 2012-16 according to statistics from the Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management. Unattended cooking is a leading cause of cooking fires.

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The campaign is targeted toward’s Toronto’s Regent Park neighbourhood, which, according to TCHC, had more fires resulting from unattended cooking than any other part of Toronto in a recent two-year period.

How: The visually striking creative shows an unattended cooking pot that has caught fire and is burning the surrounding environment. An ad on the City of Toronto’s Instagram Stories shows the pot fire burning through to the next “story” accompanied by the message “cooking is the #1 cause of home fires.”

And we quote: “What better way to call attention to the danger kitchen fires can pose to residents, than to actually set their surroundings on fire?” —Tim Kavander, executive creative director, Publicis Toronto.

“With this ad campaign, we’re reminding residents that we all are responsible for keeping each other safe from fire. Our message is simple. Fire happens fast—never leave cooking unattended.” — Matthew Pegg, Toronto fire chief.





Chris Powell