New pumper truck, pager sys­tem for Trin­ity South Cen­tral

Green’s Har­bour also gets pager sys­tem

The Compass - - PORTHTE - BY NI­CHOLAS MERCER THE COM­PASS

When the Trin­ity South Cen­tral Vol­un­teer Fire De­part­ment was formed in Novem­ber of 2011, its mem­bers were promised a new pumper/res­cue truck.

On Feb. 18, 2013, that prom­ise came one-step closer to fruition when Mu­nic­i­pal Af­fairs Min­is­ter Kevin O’Brien stepped to the podium in­side the fire hall in White­way.

O’Brien an­nounced the pur­chase of a brand new $225,000 piece of equip­ment for the roughly 50-mem­ber de­part­ment. The truck is one of eight such emer­gency ve­hi­cles to be pur­chased in part­ner­ship with eight com­mu­ni­ties in New­found­land and Labrador.

All that is left now is for it to be de­liv­ered. For now, the fire­fight­ers will have to make due with a pic­ture of the 2013 Freight­liner 1,500 gal­lon tanker/pumper hang­ing in the fire hall.

The new truck will re­place the 1984 Ford pumper cur­rently be­ing used by the bri­gade, and would join a 1982 In­ter­na­tional 600 gal­lon pumper and 2007 Dodge Ram 2500 four-wheel-drive to com­plete its fleet.

Fire­fighter Barry Chislett said the 1,500 gal­lon pumper is an as­set for the area.

“You can take in Heart’s De­light to Ho­peall with the pumper,” he said. “With a 1,500 gal­lon pumper, you can cover a lot of area.”

Fire hy­drants are at a pre­mium along the Trin­ity South Shore. Cavendish does not have f ire hy­drants. White­way has them, but they are not hooked up yet.

There are also ar­eas along tracks and back roads that do not have read­ily ac­ces­si­ble water.

“The trucks we have now carry 500-600 gal­lons of water, and you can’t get water there. That’s the prob­lem,” said Chief Ken Jack­son.

The new ve­hi­cle car­ries al­most three times as much water, plus, as Jack­son added, it has a ferry sys­tem.

“That truck will come in and pump water into a por­ta­ble pump sys­tem. The pumper will take over from there and pump it to the fire,” he said.

This sys­tem can be ap­plied to any of the neigh­bour­ing com­mu­ni­ties.

“We’re only a phone call away,” said Chislett.

The 2013 model will be the first piece of equip­ment owned by the bri­gade that will be brand new.

Ev­ery­thing else has been re­fur­bished be­fore put into ser­vice.

“It’s a good feel­ing when you see it coming to­gether and you’re get­ting a brand new piece (of equip­ment),”

said Jack­son.

Bet­ter com­mu­ni­ca­tions

The bri­gade will not only be get­ting a new truck, but also a new pager sys­tem.

This new sys­tem al­lows for ev­ery mem­ber of the bri­gade to be con­tacted at once. Be­fore, each fire­fighter had to be called in­di­vid­u­ally.

That lead to some con­fu­sion when it came to get­ting fire­fight­ers to the hall.

“Un­der the old sys­tem, we were pack­ing up to come back and the last guy was get­ting there,” said Jack­son. “We had a call in Green’s Har­bour on Box­ing Day, and we had 23 guys out of 27 pagers show up.”

The fire de­part­ment in Green’s

“It’s a good feel­ing when you see it coming to­gether and you’re get­ting a brand new piece (of equip­ment).”

— Fire Chief Ken Jack­son

Har­bour is also re­ceiv­ing a new pager sys­tem.

Chief Aaron Hi l lier said the bri­gade had a sim­i­lar sys­tem to the one used by the Trin­ity South Cen­tral de­part­ment.

“Now, peo­ple just call the one num­ber and away we go,” he said.

Both Green’s Har­bour and Trin­ity South Cen­tral share the same sys­tem.

“We’re piggy back­ing off them,” said Hil­lier.

That move al­lows for the smaller sta­tion to save a bit of money. “We ap­pre­ci­ate it,” said Hil­lier. It also al­lows both sta­tions to be in the loop when calls come in.

While both hear the call, nei­ther de­part­ment would in­ten­tion­ally im­pede on each other’s ter­ri­tory, un­less asked di­rectly.

Smooth sail­ing

It has been over a year since the

Pho­tos by Ni­cholas Mercer/the Com­pass

Trin­ity South Cen­tral Vol­un­teer Fire De­part­ment Chief Ken Jack­son speaks at the an­nounce­ment of the new truck for the de­part­ment.

Mu­nic­i­pal Af­fairs Min­is­ter Kevin O’Brien (left) and Trin­ity-Bay de Verde MHA Char­lene John­son un­veil the pic­ture of what will be­come the Trin­ity South Cen­tral Vol­un­teer Fire De­part­ment’s new pumper/res­cue truck at the fire hall in White­way on Feb. 18.

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