Sidney Fire Chief Brett Mikkelson stands with a sign advertising the Town’s emergency notification system. To date it has more than 1,200 people signed up. (Steven Heywood/News staff file)

Sidney Fire Chief Brett Mikkelson stands with a sign advertising the Town’s emergency notification system. To date it has more than 1,200 people signed up. (Steven Heywood/News staff file)

Sidney wants a single emergency notification system

Town to meet with their neighbouring Saaniches about merging under PEMO

Three communities on the Saanich Peninsula are looking into combining their emergency notification systems into one, and Sidney took recent steps to put those discussions into motion.

Town council approved a recommendation to have its fire chief and emergency management co-ordinator meet with their counterparts in Central and North Saanich. The goal would be to talk about how to merge three independent emergency notification systems into one.

North Saanich announced its own mass notification system in March 2017, the last of the three Peninsula municipalities to do so.

Sidney started its system in October of 2016. Central Saanich began theirs in March of 2016.

As of October, 2017, North Saanich had around 350 people signed up, Central Saanich had more than 200 and Sidney topped them both with 1,200-plus at that time.

Earlier this year, during Fire Prevention Week activities, the various fire departments hinted that merging all three systems was being talked about as a possibility. Sidney’s vote in December appears to formalize that process.

What’s on the table is taking all three notification systems and amalgamating them under the umbrella of the Peninsula Emergency Management Organization (PEMO).

The resulting system would be, according to Sidney, administered and funded by PEMO — with money normally allocated to the program by the three municipalities added to PEMO’s budget for that purpose.

Sidney Councillor Peter Wainwright said this would be a voluntary look at merging the services. For Sidney alone, it could save $1,288 a year.

Sidney’s mass notification system annual funding is around $7,224, and that amount would be re-allocated to PEMO in this scenario.

A combined service, according to Sidney town staff, would deliver consistent messaging and potentially increase the people to sign up for it.

Mass notification systems are designed to reach populations — or specific neighbourhoods — with up to date information about disasters or other emergency incidents, from local authorities.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Greater Victoria School District and two retired teachers are named as defendants in a lawsuit alleging that a student was sexually abused in the early 2000s. (Pixabay photo)
Former Saanich student files sexual abuse lawsuit against school district, retired teachers

Lawsuit claims student was groomed, abused by retired teacher

BC Coroners Service is currently investigating a death at Canoe Cove Marina and Boatyard in North Saanich. (Black Press Media File)
Drowning death of North Saanich likely first in B.C. for 2021

Investigation into suspected drowning Monday night continues

(Black Press Media file photo)
Mechanical issues blamed for Saanich car fire

‘Nothing untoward’ suspected, no injuries reported, firefighter says

Jimmy Fallon joked that a woman’s 4.5-star review of a Langford jail is “the most Canadian thing you could do” in The Tonight Show Jan. 21. (Screenshot/YouTube)
VIDEO: Jimmy Fallon jokes Canadian jails are basically hotels following woman’s 4.5-star review

Woman gave handwritten card to police following stay in Langford cells

Located at 9750 West Saanich Rd., this North Saanich mansion is on the market for $10.25 million. (Realtor.ca photo)
Located at 9750 West Saanich Rd., this North Saanich mansion is on the market for $8.65 million. (Realtor.ca photo)
The five most expensive homes for sale in Greater Victoria

A roundup of luxury estates currently on the market

Toronto Public Health nurse Lalaine Agarin sets up for mass vaccination clinic in Toronto, Jan. 17, 2021. B.C. is set to to begin its large-scale immunization program for the general public starting in April. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
B.C.’s COVID-19 mass vaccinations expected to start in April

Clinics to immunize four million people by September

Terry Keogh, an RDN Transit driver, used his paramedic skills the morning of Jan. 22 after coming across an unconscious woman along his route in downtown Nanaimo. (RDN Transit photo)
Nanaimo transit driver stops his bus and helps get overdosing woman breathing again

Former EMT from Ireland performed CPR on a woman in downtown Nanaimo on Friday

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam speaks during a daily briefing in Ottawa. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld)
31 cases of COVID-19 variants detected in Canada: Health officials

Dr. Theresa Tam made announces 13 more variant COVID-19 cases in Canada

An Atlantic salmon is seen during a Department of Fisheries and Oceans fish health audit at the Okisollo fish farm near Campbell River, B.C. in 2018. The First Nations Leadership Council says an attempt by industry to overturn the phasing out of salmon farms in the Discovery Islands in contrary to their inherent Title and Rights. (THE CANADIAN PRESS /Jonathan Hayward photo)
First Nations Leadership Council denounces attempt to overturn salmon farm ban

B.C.’s producers filed for a judicial review of the Discovery Islands decision Jan. 18

Daily COVID-19 cases reported to each B.C. health region, to Jan. 20, 2021. Island Health in blue, Northern Health green, Interior Health orange, Vancouver Coastal in red and Fraser Health in purple. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate stays stable with 508 cases Friday

Vaccine delivered to more than 110,000 high-risk people

More than 100 B.C. fishermen, fleet leaders, First Nations leaders and other salmon stakeholders are holding a virtual conference Jan. 21-22 to discuss a broad-range of issues threatening the commercial salmon fishery. (Black Press file photo)
B.C. commercial salmon fishermen discuss cures for an industry on the brink

Two-day virtual conference will produce key reccomendations for DFO

Black Press file photo
Investigation at remote burned-out Vancouver Island cabin reveals human remains

Identity of victim not released, believed to be the owner of an SUV vehicle found parked nearby

Angela Waldick is the new team photographer for the Nanaimo NightOwls. (Nanaimo NightOwls photo)
Half-blind photographer will help new Island baseball team look picture-perfect

Nanaimo NightOwls say legally blind team photographer is making history

School District 57 headquarters in Prince George. (Mark Nielsen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter)
Prince George school district settles with sexual abuse victim

Terms were part of an out-of-court settlement reached with Michael Bruneau, nearly four years after he filed a lawsuit

Most Read