Firefighter Training Resumes on Smaller Scale
The City of Williams Lake Fire Department will return to regular training later this month, although in smaller groups to maintain physical distancing practices.
Training for the 40-member paid-on-call crew will resume May 25-27, and continue running every Monday to Wednesday from 7-9 pm. The crew has been receiving virtual training, such as watching videos on how to respond to car fires and wildland safety, since the Fire Hall was closed on March 19 in reponse to concerns around the COVID-19 outbreak. The Fire Hall remains closed to the public at this time.
“People are going to start seeing firefighters back at the Fire Hall and maybe a truck or two on the streets at night as we get back into practice,” said Deputy Fire Chief Rob Warnock. “We need to maintain our skills but we recognize COVID-19 is still an issue so we’re going to do it in smaller groups to keep our distance.”
The new training regime will limit class sizes to between 10 and 13 firefighters, which will allow members to remain two metres apart, as per the directive of the Provincial Health Officer.
The decision to resume training follows an announcement by the Province to begin restarting the province in mid-May. Under B.C.’s Restart Plan, government will work closely with public health officials, businesses and labour organizations to lift restrictions in phases, gradually allowing for more social and economic activity, while closely monitoring health information to minimize the risk to the public.
The City will update residents as further developments occur. For up-to-date information regarding the local response to the COVID-19 situation, visit www.williamslake.ca/COVID-19.
Kelly SinoskiCorporate Engagement Officer250.email@example.com
Rob WarnockDeputy Fire Chief250.firstname.lastname@example.org