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CRD volunteer fire department review highlights dedication and commitment to resident safety

Aug 28, 2020

August 28, 2020
20-30
For immediate release

CRD volunteer fire department review highlights dedication and commitment to resident safety

WILLIAMS LAKE, BC - A volunteer fire department review released to the Cariboo Regional District Board on Aug. 21 is highlighting the challenges fire departments across the country are facing – as changes enacted at the provincial and federal level impact their workload.

The report commended the skill and dedication of the CRD’s fire chiefs and volunteers, who provide district residents with exemplary service in oftentimes challenging situations. It also noted areas where improvement in processes could deliver efficiencies and potential cost-savings.

“The adoption of the Structure Firefighters Competency and Training Playbook in 2015 gave provincial fire departments clear benchmarks for performance, but it also added significant administrative and training requirements on top of emergency response.” notes CRD Chair Margo Wagner. “We are proud of the fact that our volunteer fire departments continue to deliver exceptional fire protection and other emergency response services even with an increased workload.”

“Our fire departments put residents’ safety first,” says Stuart Larson, Manager of Protective Services for the Cariboo Regional District. “The department review notes that the CRD’s firefighters are working well within their scope, delivering much-needed fire protection across a vast region to the very best of their abilities. I have total confidence in our departments and their commitment to the work.”

Response statistics for the region highlight a track record of success. Fighting fires and protecting lives is hard, dangerous work in any scenario, but for the CRD’s firefighters, distance, terrain, and a dry climate multiply the challenges. In 2019 regional district volunteers responded to 151 fire calls, 97 motor vehicle incidents, and 344 medical emergencies.”

“We see this report as a road map for success,” says Wagner. “We asked for honest feedback and we got it. We will be reviewing its recommendations, working with our chiefs and volunteers, and looking for ways to continue our enviable track record for safe, successful emergency responses. We know that we rely upon the dedication of our firefighters to keep us safe. Making it easier for the departments to do that work will be our goal.”

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Media Contact:
Chris Keam, Manager of Communications            
250-392-3351 or 1-800-665-1636
ckeam@cariboord.ca

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