Matt Treit, Fire Chief
The month of May was a relatively busy one for the TRFD which responded to seventeen emergencies during that time period.
As usual, the majority of the calls (ten) were First Responder (medical) calls and the others included four reports of ringing fire alarms, two reports of smoke, and one response to open burning incident.
Training in the month of May included the topics of initial attack on fires, Firefighter self-rescue, auto-extrication, and many of the members also took part in a course related to the safe presentation of a fireworks display which is a requirement for putting on the annual Canada Day show.
Congratulations to Deputy Vandale, and Firefighters Dell, Hall, and Giles, as well as Probationary Firefighter Laboucan who all achieved 100 percent attendance at training sessions this past month.
In addition, Deputy Vandale and Lieutenant Braam both attended the annual British Columbia Fire Training Officers Association Conference this past month and they were both able to acquire significant knowledge which will benefit the fire department as a whole.
As many of you know, there are currently discussions proceeding regarding the proposed new ATV bylaw. Much of the impetus for this new bylaw, as well as for the new provincial ATV legislation is an effort to reduce the injuries associated with ATV use, particularly among younger riders.
According to the Canadian Institute for Health Information, there were approximately 3400 hospitalizations in 2010 from ATV related injuries, and this represented an increase of 31 percent since 2001 with the largest number of injuries among males between the ages of fifteen and nineteen. In addition, the number of ATV-related deaths increased from 142 in the year 2000 to 187 by the year 2007. The main causes of accidents were attributed to driver error, poor judgement, and loss of control of the ATV. While the new local and provincial laws will lay the groundwork for safer ATV use, legislation alone cannot prevent injuries among young ATV users; it is up to the parents and guardians of these youths to take the appropriate steps to ensure the safety of their children as these adults are the ones who ultimately have the most influence over how ATV’s are used.
The Tumbler Ridge Fire Department is continuing to look for new recruits, so if you are a person of good character who works well as part of a team and is willing to commit to weekly training, we would like to hear from you. Feel free to stop by the fire hall during regular business hours for more information.