Simpcw and Barriere move into final draft regarding mutual aid fire protection

Departments at a place where they can offer support to one another on an as needed basis

In June of 2014, the District of Barriere council reviewed the Mutual Aid Agreement for Fire Protection that had been entered into between Simpcw First Nation (North Thompson Indian Band) and the Thompson Nicola Regional District. The term of the agreement had expired. Before entertaining a new agreement in 2014, district staff were directed to enter into discussions with Simpcw to determine what a new agreement might look like.

On Nov. 12, 2015, now that new elected officials are in place for each party, the fire chiefs and the senior administrators, as well as two members of the Simpcw Fire Department, met in Chu Chua to compare notes on current capacity and resources for responding to fires in each other’s jurisdictions.

The discussion included: number of volunteers, existing equipment, insurance requirements, fire protection areas and levels of training, particularly in light of the minimum training standards set out in the new BC Fire Service Playbook.

As a result of these talks it was agreed by those in attendance that both departments were at a place where they could offer support to one another on an as needed basis.

As an outcome of the meeting, a draft agreement was to be prepared for presentation to each of the Simpcw and Barriere councils for review and approval.

If both councils are in agreement the final draft will be legally vetted prior to signing. The District of Barriere council has agreed to enter into this new agreement.