Chief Charlie Boyte's report for December 2016

Michael Boyle

The concept of "Volunteers Serving Community" continues to thrive at Pender Island Fire Rescue.

Our PIFR volunteers continue to serve with distinction, turning out at all hours of the day and night in response to emergency calls. They have responded to fires, vehicle accidents, hazardous materials reports, rescues and delivered lifesaving medical interventions. They go the extra mile to deliver services professionally with care and compassion. They train hard so you can enjoy the benefit of “Full Service” operations under the new BC Firefighters Training Standard.

PIFR is one of very few volunteer fire departments in BC trained to this standard so your homes and possessions will be better protected. This fact was clearly demonstrated at a recent structure fire. An early 911 call to that fire allowed PIFR crews to enter the structure in heavy smoke conditions and extinguish the fire. Damage was confined to the room and contents where the fire started and we were able to save a home and a lifetime of keepsakes and personal treasures.

By November 10 PIFR had attended 246 emergency calls making 2016 our busiest year ever. We experienced periods of extreme fire hazard and successfully came through unscathed while major wildfires raged in BC and Alberta. That success was the result a comprehensive public education campaign and a community that was well-educated and aware.

PIFR effectiveness is the result of tremendous effort behind the scenes. This year, PIFR staff, volunteers and support crews will again donate more than 18,000 hours of volunteer time in a relentless effort to serve Pender’s residents and visitors.

We can always use more help. If you are industrious, caring and physically fit we offer professional training to the internationally recognized NFPA 1001 firefighter standard. If you would like to help in other ways we can offer a training stream that suits your interests. If you are up to the challenge call us at 250-629-3321 or click the "Helping PIFR" icon on the home page.

Our volunteers are looking forward to the new live fire training building. Hopefully we can move ahead with Phase III (Live Fire Structure) soon. The facility at Hall #1 is essential to ongoing training and meeting new training requirements. So if you want to give PIFR a little something for Christmas contributing to the building fund would be a good choice.

Winter is near and with it comes wind and rain. Stay clear of downed hydro lines. Never assume they are safe to approach.

As you prepare for the festive season, take time to check for household fire hazards before rushing off to the ferry. Unattended electric heaters, wood stoves, candles, clothes dryers, stoves, and portable appliances are leading causes of house fires. Good safety tips can be found at There are some great short videos for adults and youngsters.

Our sincere thanks to the Pender Island Fire Protection Society and its volunteer Board of Directors for their time, guidance, support and wisdom. They are the unsung heroes of PIFR and we wish them all a wonderful holiday season and exceptional 2017.

On behalf of myself and all the volunteers, staff and board of directors, we thank you for your support and wish you a very happy and safe holiday season. Wishing you all the best and safest year ever in 2017.


Fire Chief Charlie Boyte

Forest Fire Threat Level

Burning is permitted
No permit is required
Regulations apply


Jon Grelik

Technical Rescue

PIFR Members Only

For any Emergency:

call 911


250 629-3321


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