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ACCESS TO EXIT ...means that part of a means of egress within a floor area that provides access to an exit serving the floor area. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)


AIR-SUPPORTED STRUCTURE ...means a structure that consists of a pliable membrane that achieves and maintains its shape and support by internal air pressure. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

ALARM Any notification made to the fire department that a situation exists or may exist! that requires a response. [NFPA 901-1981]

ALARM SIGNAL ...means an audible signal transmitted throughout a zone or zones or throughout a building to advise occupants that a fire emergency exists. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

ALERT SIGNAL ...means an audible signal to advise designated persons of a fire emergency. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

ALLITERATION / repetition of the same sound beginning several words in sequence.
*Let us go forth to lead the land we love. J. F. Kennedy, Inaugural
*Viri validis cum viribus luctant. Ennius
*Veni, vidi, vici. Julius Caesar (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

ANACOLUTHON / lack of grammatical sequence; a change in the grammatical construction within the same sentence.
*Agreements entered into when one state of facts exists -- are they to be maintained regardless of changing conditions? J. Diefenbaker (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

ANADIPLOSIS / ("doubling back") the rhetorical repetition of one or several words; specifically, repetition of a word that ends one clause at the beginning of the next.
*Men in great place are thrice servants: servants of the sovereign or state; servants of fame; and servants of business. Francis Bacon (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

ANAPHORA / the repetition of a word or phrase at the beginning of successive phrases, clauses or lines.
*We shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end. We shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills. We shall never surrender. Churchill. (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

ANASTROPHE / transposition of normal word order; most often found in Latin in the case of prepositions and the words they control. Anastrophe is a form of hyperbaton.
*The helmsman steered; the ship moved on; yet never a breeze up blew. Coleridge, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

ANTISTROPHE / repetition of the same word or phrase at the end of successive clauses.
*In 1931, ten years ago, Japan invaded Manchukuo -- without warning. In 1935, Italy invaded Ethiopia -- without warning. In 1938, Hitler occupied Austria -- without warning. In 1939, Hitler invaded Czechoslovakia -- without warning. Later in 1939, Hitler invaded Poland -- without warning. And now Japan has attacked Malaya and Thailand -- and the United States - without warning. Franklin D. Roosevelt (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

ANTITHESIS / opposition, or contrast of ideas or words in a balanced or parallel construction.
*Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice, moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue. Barry Goldwater
*Brutus: Not that I loved Caesar less, but that I loved Rome more. Shakespeare, Julius Caesar
*The vases of the classical period are but the reflection of classical beauty; the vases of the archaic period are beauty itself." Sir John Beazley (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

APORIA / expression of doubt (often feigned) by which a speaker appears uncertain as to what he should think, say, or do.
*Then the steward said within himself, 'What shall I do?' Luke 16 (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

APOSIOPESIS / a form of ellipse by which a speaker comes to an abrupt halt, seemingly overcome by passion (fear, excitement, etc.) or modesty. (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

APOSTROPHE / a sudden turn from the general audience to address a specific group or person or personified abstraction absent or present.
*For Brutus, as you know, was Caesar's angel. Judge, O you gods, how dearly Caesar loved him. Shakespeare, Julius Caesar (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

APPLIANCE ...means a device to convert fuel into energy, and includes all components, controls, wiring and piping required to be part of the device by the applicable standard referred to in this Code. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

APPROVED ...means approved by the Chief Fire Official. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

ARCHAISM / use of an older or obsolete form.
*Pipit sate upright in her chair Some distance from where I was sitting; T. S. Eliot, "A Cooking Egg" (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

ARCHITECT ...means a member or licensee of the Ontario Association of Architects under the Architects Act. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

AREA OF ORIGINThe room or area where the fire began (see also POINT OF ORIGIN). NFPA 921 - 1992, Guide for Fire and Explosion Investigations, National Fire Protection Association, Quincy, 1992

AREAS OF GREATEST DAMAGEThe purpose of determining the origin of the fire is to identify the geographical location where the fire began. If the specific location where the heat source ignited the first fuel can be identified, then the point of origin can be determined. The process to determine the origin involves the identification of pertinent fire patterns, the documentation of these patterns, and the analysis7 of the patterns. The process always almost involves the plotting of fire movement from the areas of least damage to the AREAS OF GREATEST DAMAGE. ... Such aspects as witness statements, the investigator's past experiences, and fire fighting procedures play important roles in the determination of the fire origin. [NFPA 921-1992, Guide for Fire and Explosion Investigations, art.11- 1, pp.86-87]

AREA OF ORIGINThe use of the room or area within the property where the fire originated. [NFPA 901-1981]


A group of individuals who convene to analyze, investigate, and solve the arson problem in a particular region. Fire Cause Determination, International Fire Service Training Association - IFSTA, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, 1986

the ART OF SPEAKINGSocrates: The fact is, as we said at the beginning of our discussion, that the aspiring speaker needs no knowledge of the truth about what is right or good... In courts of justice no attention is paid whatever to the truth about such topics; all that matters is plausibility... There are even some occasions when both prosecution and defence should positively suppress the facts in favor of probability, if the facts are improbable. Never mind the truth -- pursue probability through thick and thin in every kind of speech; the whole secret of the art of speaking lies in consistent adherence to this principle. (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

ASHES Carbon is most often is present in incompletely burned ashes. Carbon itself burns, combining with oxygen to make CO2 (and sometimes carbon monoxide). Charcoal production involves incomplete burning of wood, and the high-carbon product can burn further. Soot is a byproduct of fires which consists mostly of carbon, but even soot can burn. If you burn something completely, the ashes may contain all kinds of other stuff that didn't burn, and the carbon should burn away. Real fires tend to burn incompletely. [ref.:]

ASSEMBLY OCCUPANCY (Group 'A') ...means the occupancy or the use of a building, or part thereof, by a gathering of persons for civic, political, travel, religious, social, educational, recreational or like purposes or for the consumption of food or drink. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

ASSONANCE / repetition of the same sound in words close to each other.
*Thy kingdom come, thy will be done. (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

ASYNDETON / lack of conjunctions between coordinate phrases, clauses, or words.
*We shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardships, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty. J. F. Kennedy, Inaugural
*But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground. Lincoln, Gettysburg Address (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

ATMOSPHERIC STORAGE TANK ...means a storage tank that is designed to operate at pressures from atmospheric to 3.5 kPa (gauge). (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

ATTIC SPACE ...means the space between the roof and the ceiling of the top storey or between a dwarf wall and a sloping roof. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

AUTOMATICAs applied to fire protection devices, a device or system providing an emergency function without the necessity of human intervention. [NFPA 901-1981]

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- B -

BASEMENT ...means a storey or storeys of a building located below the first storey. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

BERNOULLI'S THEOREMBernoulli's theorem expresses the physical law of conservation of energy applied to problems of incompressible fluid flow. The theorem can be defined as follows: "In steady flow without friction, the sum of the velocity head, pressure head, and elevation head is constant for any incompressible fluid particle throughout its course." In other words, the total pressure (head) is the same at all locations within the system. [NFPA Handbook 1991]

B.L.E.V.E.Boiling Liquid-Expanding Vapor Explosion. Can occur with a fire external to a railroad tank car, a tank truck, or a drum of flammable liquid. [Friedman 1989]

B.L.E.V.E. (Boiling Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosion)A BLEVE occurs when the temperature of the liquid and vapor within a confined tank or vessel is raised, often by an external fire, to such a point that the increasing internal pressure of the liquefied gas inside can no longer be contained and the vessel explodes. This rupture of the confining vessel releases the pressurized liquid and allows it to vaporize almost instantaneously. If the liquefied gas is a flammable such as propane, the large vapor cloud produced is almost always ignited. Ignition usually occurs either from the original external fire that caused the BLEVE or from some electrical or friction source created by the blast or shrapnel effect of the container rupture. [...] When the pressure within the cylinder exceeds a determined level, the relief valve is designed to open allowing the gas pressure to be vented, thereby preventing or postponing the rupture of the cylinder. Under extreme heat conditions, such as occur in a fire, the pressure within the cylinder may increase too quickly to be fully vented by the relief valve and the cylinder may explode. This is not always the case. Often, the open relief valve and open or heat-damaged control valve will allow the pressurized gas to be expelled without the explosion of the cylinder itself.`` (P.M. &;J. Kennedy, Explosion Investigation and Analysis, Investigations Institute, Chicago, 1990)

BOILER ...means an appliance intended to supply hot water or steam for space heating, processing or power purposes. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

BOILOVERA phenomenon that can occur during a fire over an open tank containing a blend of flammable liquids, such as crude oil; water must be present at the bottom of the tank for boilover to occur. [Friedman 1989]

BRACHYLOGY / a general term for abbreviated or condensed expression, of which asyndeton and zeugma are types. Ellipse is often used synonymously. The suppressed word or phrase can usually be supplied easily from the surrounding context. (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

BUILDINGA structure enclosed with walls and a roof and having a defined height. [NFPA 901-1981]

BUILDING ...means any structure used or intended for supporting or sheltering any use or occupancy. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

BUILDING AREA ...means the greatest horizontal area of a building above grade within the outside surface of exterior walls or within the outside surface of exterior walls and the centre line of firewalls. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

BUILDING CODE ...means the Ontario Building Code made under the Building Code Act or a predecessor to that Act. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

BUILDING FIREAny fire occurring inside or involving a building. A building fire may be a wastebasket fire, a mattress fire, or a roof fire, whether or not structural members were actually involved. [NFPA 901-1981]

BUILDING HEIGHT (in storeys) ...means the number of storeys contained between the roof and the floor of the first storey. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

BURNING RATES OF LIQUID POOLSA pool of burning liquid will burn at a more or less steady rate from shortly after ignition until the liquid is consumed. To illustrate the magnitude of this rate, a pool of gasoline or mineral spirits 1 meter (3.3 feet) in diameter and 2.5 centimeter (1 inch) deep will be consumed in about 4 minutes. [Friedman 1989]

BURN PATTERNApparent and obvious design of burned material and the burning path of travel [see also Vector] from a point of fire origin. [Fire Cause Determination, IFSTA 1986]

BUSINESS AND PERSONAL SERVICES OCCUPANCY (Group 'D') ...means the occupancy or use of a building or part thereof for the transaction of business or the rendering or receiving of professional or personal services. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

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CACOPHONY / harsh joining of sounds.
*We want no parlay with you and your grisly gang who work your wicked will. W. Churchill (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)CARBONACEOUS MATERIALA material that contains carbon. [Fire Cause Determination, IFSTA 1986]

CARBOXYHEMOGLOBINA chemical compound resulting from the reaction of hemoglobin with carbon monoxide, after which oxygen can no longer be transported by the hemoglobin. [Friedman 1989]

CATACHRESIS / a harsh metaphor involving the use of a word beyond its strict sphere.
*I listen vainly, but with thirsty ear. MacArthur, Farewell Address (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

CELLAR ...means a basement that is more than 50 per cent below grade. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

CELLULOSEA natural polymer (C6H10O5) in which is a principal constituent of cotton, wood and paper. [Friedman 1989]

CHAIN REACTIONThe rapid reaction of a free atom or radical with another species, the products of which include 1 or more free atoms or radicals, which can undergo further rapid reactions. If more than 1 free atom or radical is produced, a branching chain reaction results. [Friedman 1989]

CHAR Carbonaceous material formed by incomplete combustion of an organic material, commonly wood; the remains of burned materials. [Fire Cause Determination, IFSTA 1986]

CHECK ...means visual observation to ensure the device or system is in place and is not obviously damaged or obstructed. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

CHIASMUS / two corresponding pairs arranged not in parallels (a-b-a-b) but in inverted order (a b-b-a); from shape of the Greek letter chi (X).
*Those gallant men will remain often in my thoughts and in my prayers always. MacArthur
*Renown'd for conquest, and in council skill'd. Addison (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

CHIEF FIRE OFFICIAL ...means the assistant to the Fire Marshal who is the Municipal Fire Chief or a member or members of the fire department appointed by the Municipal Fire Chief under Subsection 1.1.8. or a person appointed by the Fire Marshal under Subsection 1.1.8. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

CHIMNEY ...means a primarily vertical shaft enclosing at least 1 flue for conducting flue gases to the outdoors. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

CHIMNEY EFFECTThe tendency of air or gas in a duct or other vertical passage to rise when heated due to its lower density compared with that of surrounding air or gas. In buildings, the tendency toward displacement caused (by the difference in temperature) of internal heated air by unheated outside air due to the difference in density of outside and inside air. [ASHRAE Guide and Data Book 1963]

CLASS A FIRE means a fire involving combustible materials such as wood, cloth and paper.

CLASS B FIRE means a fire involving a flammable or combustible liquid, fat or grease.

CLASS C FIRE means a fire involving energized electrical equipment.

CLASS D FIRE means a fire involving a combustible metal. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)


Class A fire : Fire in "ordinary" combustible solids. However, if a plastic readily melts in a fire, it might be Class B rather than Class A.

Class B fire : Fire in flammable liquids, gases and greases.

Class C fire : Fire in energized electrical equipment.

Class D fire : Fire in combustible metals.

Class I liquid : A liquid with a flash point below 38C (100F).

Class II liquid : A liquid with a flash point between 38C and 60C (100 and 140F).

Class III liquid : A liquid with a flash point above 60C (140F). [Friedman 1989]

CLIMAX / arrangement of words, phrases, or clauses in an order of ascending power. Often the last emphatic word in one phrase or clause is repeated as the first emphatic word of the next.
*One equal temper of heroic hearts, Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield. Tennyson, Ulysses (A Glossary of Rhetorical Terms with Examples, Ross Scaife)

CLOSED CONTAINER ...means a container so sealed by means of a lid or other device that neither liquid nor vapour will escape from it at ordinary temperatures. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

CLOSURE ...means a device or assembly for closing an opening through a fire separation such as a door, a shutter, wired glass or glass block and includes all components, such as hardware, closing devices, frames and anchors. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

CODE A set of rules and standards that have been adopted as mandatory regulations having the force and effect of law. [NFPA 921 - 1992]

COMBUSTIBLE CONSTRUCTION ...means that type of construction that does not meet the requirements for noncombustible construction. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

COMBUSTIBLE DUST ...means dust and particles ignitable and liable to explode when mixed with air. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

COMBUSTIBLE FIBRES ...means finely divided combustible vegetable or animal fibres and thin sheets or flakes of such materials that in a loose, unbaled condition present a flash fire hazard, and includes cotton, wool, hemp, sisal, jute, kapok, paper and cloth. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

COMBUSTIBLE LIQUID ...means any liquid having a flash point at or above 37.8oC and below 93.3oC. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

COMBUSTION An exothermic chemical reaction that produces heat, and generally light as well, in a variety of mediums; the burning process, causing loss of weight to a compound. [Fire Cause Determination, IFSTA 1986]

COMBUSTION An exothermic chemical reaction that occurs so rapidly that the heat released causes the temperature of the reaction zone to be many hundreds or even several thousands of degrees higher than the surroundings. [Friedman 1989]

COMBUSTION REACTION The difference between a slow oxidative reaction and a combustion reaction is that the latter occurs so rapidly that heat is generated faster than it is dissipated, causing a substantial temperature rise (at least hundreds of degrees, and often several thousands of degrees). Very often, the temperature is so high that visible light is emitted from the combustion reaction zone. [Friedman 1989]

COMPRESSED GAS ...means any contained mixture or material with either an absolute pressure exceeding 275.8 kPa at 21oC or an absolute pressure exceeding 717 kPa at 54oC, or both, or any liquid having an absolute vapour pressure exceeding 275.8 kPa at 37.8oC. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

CONCLUSION A decision or judgment reached after some reasoning process.

Conduction Heat transfer to another body or within a body by direct contact. [NFPA 921 - 2001]

CONSTRUCTOR ...means a person who contracts with an owner, occupant or their authorized agent to undertake a project, and includes an owner, occupant or authorized agent who contracts with more than one person for the work on a project or undertakes the work on a project or any part thereof. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

CONTAINED USE AREA ...means a supervised area containing one or more rooms in which occupant movement is restricted to a single room by security measures not under the control of the occupant. (Ontario Fire Code 1996)

CONVECTION Heat transfer by circulation within a medium, such as a gas or a liquid. [NFPA 921 - 1992]

CONVECTION Transfer of heat by movement of fluid. <

CONVECTIVE HEAT Energy that is carried by a hot moving fluid. (Energy can be radiated through space, or conducted through a solid, as well as convected by a fluid.) [Friedman 1989]

CORROSIVE LIQUID ...means a liquid that, when contacting living tissue causes damage to the tissue, or when contacting organic matter and chemicals that react with the liquid, causes fire. (Ontario Fire Code 1996) <>

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