From the Northside
Almost 200 assist fire departments on Northside
Gordon Sampson details two rural fire departments.
As mentioned in my June 29 column, the following are the last two fire departments on the Northside to be described in detail.
With eight fire departments on the Northside, I tallied 192 volunteers in total, which is amazing.
The Georges River Volunteer Fire Department is located at 1208 Georges River Road; its coverage area is as follows: all of Johnson Road, Georges River Road, all of Long Island, Scotch Lake to Leitches Creek Road, and Barrachois Mountain to the bottom of the Barrachois.
This department was established in 1980 and Don Hardy was the first chief for a year. Al Coleman was chief for 11 years and Danny MacCormick was chief for 18 years. Then Wayne Devoe for three years, and presently Travais Briand for the last three years.
It has five paramedics, nine MFRs (Medical First Responders), nine Level One trained firefighters, eight trained at high-angle level rescue, and six divers.
There are 18 members in this department; they are as follows: Chief Travais Briand, Deputy Chief Charles Carmichael, Captain Jim Clark, Captain Erica Stubbert, Jim Billard, Dan MacCormick, Donald Jessome, Freddy Jardine, Sheldon MacDonald, Savana Rahey, Joe MacInnis, Brad Rahey, Tonya Whelan, Wayne Devoe, Clohe Rahey, Kenny Caldwell, Allan MacDougall and Greg MacDon- ald.
As far as trucks are concerned, they have two tanker pumper combinations and a 1/2-ton rescue unit.
So far this year they have had 30 calls, 15 of which were medical, to assist the Emergency Health Services (EHS). They recently dealt with brush fires and car fires.
They have a mutual response with other departments such as Frenchvale, North Sydney, Sydney Mines, Florence, Big Bras d’Or, Ross Ferry and Southside Boularderie because there are no fire hydrants in the area.
The Frenchvale Road Volunteer Fire Department is having its 40th Anniversary this year, and it is located at 756 Frenchvale Road.
Its coverage area is as follows: Keltic Drive from the Northwest Arm to Seaview Drive, all of Frenchvale Road, Campbells Road, Balls Creek, all of Beechmont Road, MacAdams Lake, Upper Leitches Creek Road, and all side streets located in that area.
This department was established in 1975, and the councillor at that time was Hugh MacInnins who called a meeting to gauge the interest of the community in establishing a fire department. Once there was interest shown, the members of the community went through the process of selecting a site for the station; the current site was the one chose, and has been used as the station ever since.
The fire station and the com- munity hall are housed in the same building: the fire station was built first and the community hall was added later. The hall portion was completely renovated in 2013, and presently renovations to the fire station began three weeks ago.
There are 21 members in this department; they are as follows: Chief Mark Voutier, Deputy Chief Jamie MacDonald, Captain Jimmy Musgrave, Captain Anthony Milley, Captain Travis Hill, Lieutenant Cory Donovan, Lieutenant Lucas Detheridge, Treasurer Stanley MacDonald (retired firefighter and one of the original members), Johnny Deleski, Mike MacPhee, Steven Keeping, Steve Shepherd, Andy Green, Doug MacKinnon, Denise Boyce, Bill Puddicombe, Amanda Detheridge, Laura MacNeil, Joe MacNeil, Richard Wood and Nelson MacLean.
It has two trucks: a 1999 rescue pumper which holds 800 gallons of water, and has five firefighters, and a 2001 tanker pumper which holds 1000 gallons of water, and has two firefighters.
So far this season, the Frenchvale Fire Department has dealt with brush fires, alarms, structure fires and motor vehicle accidents; it covers the second largest area in the Cape Breton Regional Municipality.
These fire departments are the cornerstone of their communities, and it is hoped by all the members that they will remain in the communities for years to come.
SUBMITTED PHOTO Pictured above from left to right are Georges River Fire Chief Travais Briand, Deputy Chief Charles Carmichael, Frenchvale Road Fire Chief Mark Voutier and Lieutenant Travis Hill.