2016 wildfires spark review of Charlie Lake fire coverage Last year's wildfires are helping spur an upcoming review of Charlie Lake's fire services and whether to bring an estimated 800 homes and 1,500 residents into the department's coverage area.
The Peace River Regional District is planning to undertake a third party review of the Charlie Lake Fire Department to determine whether expanding its fire protection area is feasible and what new costs, if any, would come with upgraded coverage. While plans for the review are still coach outlet stores katy mills in the early stages, work is expected to start sometime this year, with David Mitchell Associates undertaking the work. Area C Director Brad Sperling said he's fielded inquiries from residents outside the current fire protection areas, including areas north of Charlie Lake, about the possibility of receiving firefighting services. "Of course, after last year's wildfires, we had a lot big coach bags outlet of calls," he said. "We started thinking about what could we do and what it would look like if we did expand." The 2016 wildfire season helped set a record volume of calls for the department at 110 for the year, Fire Chief Dan Ross said. "We were definitely busy. We weren't overtaxed but we also didn't have the resources to help out in Taylor, and vice versa," Ross said. "We were close to our limits for sure." Following the fires, there was concern from residents who were outside the fire protection area, Ross said. "There hasn't been this big of a fire threat in awhile," he said. "People outside the protection area were definitely worried, not so much that they didn't have fire protection, because they're covered by forestry, but they wouldn't have had that immediate fire protection from the fire department." The department has received only 12 calls so far this year, leaving the 30 member volunteer department waiting for action. It's can be difficult to keep a volunteer force motivated during slow times, Ross said. "It just seems like it's endless training, training, training with no calls in between," he said. "They require the training, but they like to put that training to use." His department supports the review and expanding its coverage area in the community, however, Ross said a lack of statistics makes it difficult to determine how an expansion would impact call volumes. "Outside the fire protection area, we don't know if historically there's, in the areas they're looking at, there's one fire historically a year, or 100 fires historically a year," he said, estimating another 800 households and 1,500 to 2,000 people could be included under the expanded coverage. They currently aren't allowed to respond to those calls under the department's existing establishment bylaw from 1980, according to Ross. However, the firefighters have the necessary training to provide those services, he coach outlet locations 10 said. "The guys are more than willing to expand not only the response area, but the coach men's outlet online level of service," he said. "They're looking forward to it." How those new services are considered as part of the review remains to be seen. Sperling says the district wants to concentrate on fire protection and response services. That alone might come with a need for new equipment or infrastructure, such as water depots, to service any new areas, he said. "If we're going to do it, I want to make sure we're doing it right," Sperling said. The regional district must be cautious about the workload it adds to a volunteer fire department, PRRD CAO Chris Cvik said. "If you're getting called out for fighting fires, and you're looking to expand that service, that's one thing," he said. "But if all of a sudden you expand the service and then you say, OK, in addition to that, we're going to respond to vehicle extrications and roadside emergencies, there's a lot more of those types of events. All of a sudden, you've just added an additional stressor on a volunteer fire department. "Is that going to have an impact on response? Lots of questions, and again, some of the questions will be answered through the (study)." Expanding the department's fire protection area would be a board decision, Cvik said. To go beyond fighting fires and amending the department's establishment bylaw would require a referendum and could include the possibility of new taxes to support the new services, he said. The department was last reviewed in 2011 by David Mitchell Associates as the regional district was preparing to assume operations of the department from the Charlie Lake/Grandhaven Fire Protection Society.
That study concluded that having the department respond to medical calls or vehicle extrications required careful consideration due to an increase in training needed and the number of incident responses. A public survey in that study found 58 residents were in favour the department providing the medical call and road rescue services, even if it involved higher taxes. There were 86 people surveyed who were opposed.
Prev: coach outlet atlanta improv
Next: coach outlet locations 5 guys