Saanich firefighter  Mitch Williams stands atop Mount Tolmie where his crew tests out using soft hoses

Saanich firefighter Mitch Williams stands atop Mount Tolmie where his crew tests out using soft hoses

Sunny weather signals start to fire season

  • May. 19, 2011 12:00 p.m.

With the weather heating up and natural surroundings beginning to dry out, Saanich firefighters are on guard.

Last Thursday, crews did equipment run-throughs atop Mount Tolmie to be ready for the inevitable summer fires, which can strike without notice.

“We are coming into the warm season and there is the potential for grass fires and brush fires,” said chief fire prevention officer Todd Cave. “It’s a great opportunity for us to get into these different areas to train and practise on site.”

Doing adequate training prior to the hot months is key to ensure every firefighter is ready for any variety of situations.

This year, the department switched from four- to five-inch, high-volume hoses. While the larger hoses allow for more water to get on a fire faster, the change has meant all staff must train with the new equipment so they’re comfortable when a real situation arises.

“Training is something we do standard every year. There’s nothing better for us than to be on site practising,” Cave said. “But, like anything, as technology changes and improves. We need to make sure everyone is up to current standards, so when these fires occur we are all ready to go.”

For information on fire prevention through the summer months, visit www.bcforestfireinfo.gov.bc.ca.

kslavin@saanichnews.com