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Summerland Fire Department

The Summerland Fire Department is a composite department with 4 fulltime members and 24 Paid on Call Firefighters. The department responds to a wide variety of emergency response incidents as well as conducts property inspections, plan reviews and public education training. The department coordinates all Emergency Preparedness Planning within the District of Summerland.

Emergency Response

In 2006 the Summerland Fire Department responded to 224 incidents. This was an increase of 14% from 197 incidents in 2005. Incidents include structure fires, wildland fires, response to alarms, motor vehicle accidents etc. The Summerland Fire Department does not provide medical first responder service. The department responds to motor vehicle incidents outside it boundaries within the RDOS upon request of the RCMP.

Public Education

In 2006 the Public Education Coordinator left the department to take another position within the Municipality. In reviewing the vacant position, management was of the opinion that the position be restructured to the roll of a firefighter / inspector. In doing so, public education aspects of the department are now a shared roll which includes all fire department staff. In 2006 the department conducted 87 public education events including fire extinguisher training, fire drills, fire hall tours, and fire and life safety presentations for pre school students.

Training

In 2006, as the basis for all fire department training, the department implemented the Justice Institute of British Columbia Firefighter I & II program. This program trains firefighters to the NFPA 1001 ­ qualifications for career firefighters ­ standard. Currently 20 firefighters are enrolled in the program. By adopting this standard we are ensuring that our members are receiving training consistent with North American fire department standards. Upon completion, this program is worth 30 university credits.

Premise Inspections

2006 saw an increase in premise inspections to 498 from 419 in 2005. The department continues to work closely with the Development Services Department in regards to the review of development plans, and building code issues as they relate to fire and life safety.

Fuel Modification Work

In 2006 the District applied for and was awarded a Fuel Management Operational Project grant from the UBCM. In conjunction with the Ministry of Forests the department undertook the process of thinning the forest canopy on a 16 hectare parcel of Municipal land adjacent to the Pierre / Pollack subdivision. The intent of this project is to reduce the fuel located on these lands, therefore reducing the fire danger rating in the neighbouring sub-division. The site prescription calls for the removal of excess trees from the 4000 per hectare down to 400 per hectare. We anticipate completion of the project in 2009.

Summary

Due to changes in demographics and pressure from the development sector, the fire department is finding it ever increasingly difficult to ensure a full compliment of firefighters during daytime calls. As the community grows and we see an increase in densities and heights of buildings, the problem will only become more magnified. The growth of the fire department in terms of staffing and equipment requirements must be phased in over time to accommodate community growth.

SUMMERLAND FIRE AND EMERGENCY SERVICES

2006 ANNUAL REPORT ACTIVITY STATISTICS

Call Type

Fire Alarm Response Ambulance Assistance Burning Complaints Carbon Monoxide Detection Activity Electrical / Mechanical Failure Fire Calls Motor Vehicle Accidents Natural Gas Leaks Public Service Rescue Operations Response / Investigations Petroleum Spills Total Calls

2006

50 9 22 2 1 62 19 6 15 2 33 0 225

2005

40 4 22 3 1 57 24 8 7 1 27 2 196

2004

33 3 18 3 3 83 27 4 7 4 18 2 205

2003

35 1 22 1 3 81 21 6 11 2 28 2 213

2002

54 2 31 0 5 80 14 0 7 3 11 2 209

And finally, 2006 saw the retirement of one of our longest serving volunteer firefighters. Bruce Hallquist retired after being with our Fire Department for 38 years.

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Microsoft Word - Fire Dept Annual Report 2006.doc