From the North­side

Al­most 200 as­sist fire de­part­ments on North­side

Cape Breton Post - - CAPE BRETON - Gordie Samp­son From the North­side Gor­don Samp­son is a re­tired teacher who lives in his home­town of North Syd­ney. His col­umn will ap­pear weekly in the Cape Bre­ton Post. He writes a sep­a­rate col­umn in the Cape Bre­ton Com­mu­nity Post. Any­one with com­mu­nity ne

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.

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