North Cowichan to Host Wildfire Training for Firefighters

(North Cowichan, BC) – On Sunday, May 30, the North Cowichan Fire Department will host 14 Vancouver Island fire departments for the Engine Boss Leader Course, a firefighting professional development course to help improve the response to wildfires in our region and prepare crews for the 2021 wildfire season.

The Engine Boss Leader Course is designed for B.C. Municipal Fire Departments to meet Office of the Fire Commissioner and B.C. Wildfire Service training and practical requirements for provincial wildfire deployments. The course strives to emulate many of the conditions, requirements and procedures encountered on actual Wildland Urban Interface fires.

The Wildland Urban Interface is a zone of transition between wilderness and developed land – an area where a built environment meets or intermingles with a natural environment. The training is taking place in two locations in North Cowichan where crews will perform tactics to protect homes in the event of a wildfire: the Carmel Drive and Moya Road neighbourhood, and Cottonwood Road and Crozier Road in Chemainus.

“On Sunday, you may notice an increase in fire truck activity in the community, especially near Carmel and Moya, off Gibbins Road, and near Fuller Lake in Chemainus,” said Mayor Al Siebring. “Crews will also be using staging areas, Queen Margaret’s School, the parking lot next to VIU, and Fuller Lake Arena. This training is key, for both our community, which is surrounded by forests, and our firefighters, who will benefit immensely from this on-the-ground training.”

Due to the restrictions of COVID-19, delivery of this program is being done regionally to limit exposure and travel for firefighters from around the Province. Advance COVID-19 protocols, supported by the Public Health Officer, will be in place for the training.

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Media Contact:         
Martin Drakeley
Manager, Fire and Bylaw Services
Municipality of North Cowichan
T 250.746.3266
E Martin.Drakeley@northcowichan.ca