Community leaders and fire department members of Cavendish and Whiteway gathered today (Feb. 18) as the provincial government announced funding for a new firefighting tanker truck. The province allocated $225,000 for the purchase in its 2012 budget.
Kevin O’Brien, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Minister Responsible for Fire and Emergency Services, was joined by the Charlene Johnson, Minister of Child Youth and Family Services and MHA for Trinity-Bay de Verde, in making the announcement at the Trinity South Central Fire Hall in Whiteway.
“The communities of Cavendish and Whiteway combined the services of two former fire departments in 2011 and have since been working diligently to build the skills of the members of the new Trinity South Central Fire Department,” said O’Brien.
“The two communities recognized that together they could improve the level of fire protection for their communities and better develop the skills and knowledge of their firefighters by combining services. I am pleased and encouraged to support their efforts with today’s announcement of a new tanker truck.”
Based on population, Cavendish and Whiteway will avail of the 90/10 cost-share arrangement with the provincial government to purchase the new firefighting vehicle.
“Today’s announcement of this new firefighting vehicle is welcomed news for the Trinity South Central Fire Department and an exciting addition to the region,” added Johnson.
“Since coming together in 2011, the level of co-operation between Cavendish and Whiteway has been outstanding and the fire department has become a leader in regional collaboration.
“This new tanker truck will certainly enable these firefighters to better serve these communities and I congratulate them on their obvious level of commitment.”
O’Brien noted this firefighting vehicle for Trinity South Central is one of eight new vehicles which will be purchased in partnership with communities throughout Newfoundland and Labrador.
Public tenders for new vehicles will be let in the near future, with delivery anticipated for the summer/fall 2013.
New emergency vehicles announced last year have arrived in 21 communities throughout the province, with the one remaining vehicle expected to be delivered to the community of Embree in the coming weeks.
“The more than 35 members of our fire department are overjoyed to learn we will be receiving a brand new vehicle to help us protect lives and property,” said Ken Jackson, Fire Chief of the Trinity South Central Fire Department.
“I want to thank the Provincial Government and FES-NL for recognizing the need and working with us to better our services. Most importantly, I extend heartfelt appreciation to our firefighters, especially assistant chiefs Norm Brown and Neil Critch, for their co-operation, commitment, and dedication to service.”
Since the creation of Fire and Emergency Services - Newfoundland and Labrador in 2007, the provincial government has contributed more than $14.2 million towards new firefighting vehicles in the province and in excess of $4 million for equipment, with a particular focus on personal protective equipment. Combined with the municipal contribution, more than $20 million in new equipment has been infused into community fire halls throughout the province.