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Fire Happens Fast

Publicis and Toronto Fire Services (TFS) in partnership with Toronto Community Housing Corporation (TCHC) teamed up to address the rising issue of cooking-related fires in TCHC buildings.

City of Toronto / Toronto Fire Services

Cooking is the #1 cause of apartment fires in Canada, with most of these incidents happening as a result of people simply not paying close enough attention during food preparation. This was especially true in Regent Park, or more specifically Toronto Fire Service Run Area 325, which saw more fires started from unattended cooking than any other area of Toronto. With many of those fires occurring in TCHC high-rise buildings.

The potential of a fire breaking out is typically the last thing on a person’s mind. So, we knew that we needed to jolt residents into paying attention and the message needed to be uncomplicated to resonate with our diverse target of Regent Park. In order to educate people about the dangers of unattended cooking, we “set fire” to their neighbourhood through a highly targeted integrated campaign. The concept demonstrated the dangers associated with unattended cooking in very literal terms.

The campaign launched in October 2019 with strategically placed billboards (75 Sherbourne St. and 323 Richmond St.), transit shelters, geo-targeted digital ads and social media posts. The creative was designed to show the media environment in which the ad appears in to be set on fire from a pot sitting on a stovetop. The caption on each ad reminds residents that “Fire Happens Fast” and to “Never leave cooking unattended”.