Chief Charlie Boyte's report for November 2015

Michael Boyle

PIFR attended 197 incidents as of October 20th compared to 184 in the same period in 2014, an increase of about seven per cent. As the types, numbers and complexity of incidents increases the new training facility will allow us to address the training challenges these emergencies present. Phase 2 is now substantially complete and we are working to acquire funding so we can complete the training building and make this training centre a reality.

I think there are still some misconceptions about how Fire and Rescue services are delivered in small communities. Our newer folks and visitors who have come from the city might assume all firefighters are paid employees staffing the fire halls 24/7. That is simply not possible on the Penders without a huge and unacceptable tax burden on property owners. That is why we have a community-based, community-supported fire and rescue service staffed primarily by volunteers.

Our PIFR volunteer professionals train to the internationally accepted NFPA standards, the same standard of training firefighters in Vancouver and Victoria must achieve because our family, friends and neighbors deserve the same competent service as city folks. We also believe that when you call for help someone should arrive at your door who knows exactly what to do. No matter what time you call or what your emergency is our volunteers will be there for you.

The fact that our volunteers are willing to commit to the professional standard is exceptional. I hope you appreciate the level iof commitment these people have made to keep you and your families safe.

We sincerely hope there are more folks in the community like the ones that serve PIFR today. The reality is that we need new recruits to ensure a future that includes comprehensive service levels, minimal insurance costs and improved security for our community.

So folks, if you are fit and between the ages of 17 and 50, we would really like you to seriously consider taking on the firefighting challenge. We are accepting applications now so we can get our new students registered in November with the college so we can deliver the accredited training. If you make a commitment to train on Saturdays from January to May, we will do the rest. If you fit in this demographic and want a secure future in our Island paradise please contact Deputy Chief Mike Dine for an interview at 250-629-3321.

Burning season will be upon us by the time this report appears and burning permits will not be required for outdoor burning. The exception is large “Class A” fires (over two meters in diameter and one meter in height and fires that are machine piled). These fires require a permit year round. Please remember to review the regulations in the CRD bylaw when burning to ensure your safety and avoid fines for illegal fires. The regulations are available here on the website.

Here are some tips to help you stay safe and within the law while burning:

Thanks in advance for your cooperation and support.

Until next month Stay Safe.

Fire Chief Charlie Boyte

Forest Fire Threat Level

Burning is permitted
No permit is required
Regulations apply

PIFR Members Only

For any Emergency:

call 911


250 629-3321


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