About Us

Who we are

The history of Fire Safety at the OAC Guelph can be tracked back to the year 1928, when a survey of fire protection was completed July 19th by Mr. George Lewis, Deputy Fire Marshal for the province of Ontario.

The recommendations he provided had many suggestions for building safety and concluded with the suggestion of forming a 23 man fire brigade. As the building inspections were underway and protocols being updated, there were positions added for night watchmen and night matrons for all dormitories. No official fire brigade was ever formed until after the war when the fire of the SS Noronic in 1949 and the loss of at least 118 put in to perspective the importance of proper fire safety.

The University of Guelph Fire Department officially opened in 1952 and bought its first fire truck the following year. For decades to come the University of Guelph Fire Department had officers working 24/7 responsible for responding to all emergencies on campus.

It wasn’t until the year 1975 when the end of an era was brought about, as far as firefighting was concerned at the University of Guelph. On May 30th, 1975 Fire Chief Vic Richards retired after 29 years of service with OAC. Firefighting responsibilities were later taken over by the City of Guelph once the third Guelph fire station was constructed on Stone Road and the focus was then moved from fire fighting to fire prevention.

Up until 1994, the University of Guelph Fire Safety had still been responsible for responding to all fire alarms and then notifying the Guelph Fire department if needed. This method was replaced due to its inefficient nature to allow all fire alarms to be immediately responded by the Guelph Fire Department. Currently we staff two full time Fire Safety Officers who work Monday to Friday, serving the safety needs of the entire campus.

Scott Hamilton and Karen MacDonald are our two Fire Safety Officers and combined they have over 40 years of experience on our campus.  


What we do

We believe that everyone has a right to a safe workplace and every worker has a responsibility to themselves and others to play their part in ensuring safety across the campus.

Over the years the focus of this division has moved from suppression to prevention. The majority of our duties now are to maintain fire and life safety standards and equipment across the university campus. Our two full time Fire Safety Officers work Monday to Friday to make the University of Guelph a safer place.



Where we are located 

The Campus Fire Safety is located in the Trent Building at 32 Trent Lane, Guelph, Ontario.

The building itself is a three-story brown brick building between Maids Hall and Blackwood Hall which is also the home of Campus Community Police and Parking Services.

For more information regarding accessibility options and parking information please refer to the Trent/Police Building Information Webpage.

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Contact us


  • To contact us by phone dial: 519-840-5000
  • If using a campus telephone use extention 52000

Non emergency

  • To contact us by phone dial: 519-824-4120 at extention 52071
  • If using a campus telephone use extention 52071


To request training or fire inspection please email  request@fire.uoguelph.ca

If you are aware of a potential fire hazard please feel free to fill out the Fire Hazard Report Form.



Fire Emergency?


 x2000 or 519-840-5000

Non-emergency: x52071

Report a Fire Hazard