Barriere Fire Chief Ashley Wohlgemuth reported at the May 4, District of Barriere regular council meeting on the types of calls attended by Barriere Fire Department during March and April of this year.
The Chief reported there were eight call outs in March that included; one report of a gas smell, one public assist, one chimney fire, one structure fire, one grass fire, two burning complaints, and one Mutual Aid to Chu Chua regarding a carbon monoxide call.
Wohlgemuth noted that during the month of April there were a total of seven calls regarding burning complaints.
“Since the introduction of the burn ban that started for our area on March 26 there has been an increase of burn complaint calls,” said the Chief, “Once people were informed of the reason of the fire ban being related to COVID-19 and not fire risk, they were quite understanding.”
Road Rescue call outs in March and April included; one false alarm, one motor vehicle incident, and five call outs for rural rescue. The rural rescue calls took place at Highway 5 and Boulder Mountain, Carlson Road and Highway 5, Oliver Creek Forest Service Road, a semi rollover at Mitchell Road, and a call out to a machine rollover.
The Chief reported the department held three practice/training sessions in March and no practices in April. The March training included; RIT Team, Ropes and Knots, and Station Cleaning and Sanitizing.
Wohlgemuth stated, “While the COVID-19 situation continues we have not had a fire practice since March 19. We are sending out some online training to our members to ensure that everyone is ready for the upcoming fire season.”
The Chief also noted when attending call outs that the department makes sure to maintain social distancing requirements as much as the trucks allow, and to only have a maximum of four fire fighters per truck.
“We also have all of the necessary PPE [Personal Protective Equipment] to don for when we are called out,” said Wohlgemuth.