Fire News: Chief’s Response Report – 2019 October

Response Report: Salt Spring Island Firefighters responded to 32 calls for the month of October.


As part of our ongoing community education and outreach SSIFR is hosting the 1st series of Resiliency training for the community organized by the Salt Spring Island Emergency Program. The first block consists of four three-hour training sessions covering several key areas that will help our community be more resilient during emergencies. Registration is full for the 1st and 2nd series but there are plans to continue this community education program with the Salt Spring Island Emergency Program.
Salt Spring Island Fire Rescue conducted our annual hose testing with over 25,000 feet of fire hose tested. Thanks to the testing we were able to find several hose lengths that were in need of replacing and failed the test.

The C.R.E.S.T. roll out of the P25 digital radio system is only months away. Our department will be outfitted with new Motorola radios through the CRD’s 9-1-1 levy. Also, with the fire pager capital reserves we have placed our final order for replacement pagers that are capable with the new digital system. The advancements with the new digital system should help strengthen our islands quality of communications for years to come.


Our dedicated members trained on numerous disciplines over the month of October including:

  • First Responder Training
  • Occupational Health and Safety
  • Rapid Fire Attack
  • Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA)
  • Fire Hose Management (Nozzles Forward)
  • FUS Drafting (Ocean Draft Operations)
  • Building Construction
  • Fire Ventilation
  • Forcible Entry
  • Loss Control
  • Fireworks Display certification
  • Pumps and Pumping (Course)
  • Water / Ice Rescue
  • Auto Extrication
  • Technical Rope Rescue Operations


Unfortunately, one of our firefighters Simon Wells who joined SSIFR in 2012 has had to retire from our organization. Simon served our community with pride for almost a decade. We wish Simon all the best and thank him for his service.

Many of our SSIFR members were nominated for the 2019 Salt Spring Island Salty Awards for Top First Responder. Firefighters: W Nuyens, T McCormick, P Andress, P Byrne, K Akerman, J Kitchen, M Sherrin, J Lindstrom, C Sawchuk, C Hunsberger, C Jackson, C Pohl, B Van Britsom, and A Hohn. The volume of SSIFR nominees reinforces the great work our firefighters do in our community. Congratulations to all the Nominees within SSIFR and within our fantastic community.

Salt Spring Island Fire Rescue was recently awarded the Widening Our Worlds (WOW) award from Community Living BC. An awards ceremony was held at Fire Hall #1 to celebrate our organization being an ambassador for inclusion and bringing greater awareness of the benefits of inclusion in our community.

Inspection and Fire and Life Safety Education

October is one of our busiest months for community outreach and education. Our Fire and Life Safety Educators met with 885 members of the community on several key interests.

  • 32 Fire/Life Safety Inspections
  • 10 Site Consultations
  • 885 Community Outreach

  • During Fire Prevention Week (FPW) We saw 589 students, staff and family members during school visits to Fernwood, Fulford, Phoenix, Centre and Salt Spring Elementary schools. The Theme this year was "Not Every Hero Wears a Cape; Plan and Practice Your Home Fire Escape." Children engaged in many interactive lessons with firefighters.
  • We wrapped up Fire Prevention Week with an Open House at the Ganges Fire Hall on Oct 12. Some 75-100 islanders attended the event.
  • We collaborated with the SSI Library, SSI Conservancy, SSI Home Design Centre, Transition Salt Spring and Cameron Sweet Chimney Sweep to present our third annual "Burn-it-Smart" workshop to promote wood-heat safety with 24 attendees.
  • We taught evacuation procedures and fire-extinguisher skills to ushers and managers at ArtSpring with 35 attendees.
  • We taught airbrake and pre-trip procedures along with fire-extinguisher skills to 15 School District 64 bus drivers
  • We taught two more CPR/AED classes to Grade-9 students at GISS (25 attendees per session).
  • We taught CPR/AED to nine staff from Lady Minto Hospital and another class of eight staff from Salt Spring Elementary.
  • We visited Little Red School house preschool (21 attendees) and had a firehall visit from Little Blue Preschool
  • We also attended a Senior's Wellness fair at Fulford Hall to teach fall and fire prevention themes with 20 attendees.
  • And we attended Family Place to provide education about choking hazards for 16 new parents and children.

Respectfully Submitted
Arjuna George
Fire Chief

November 15, 2019 9:20 PM

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