The Fire Department added several new members to each of its halls this year after a new group of recruits completed their firefighter one and two certification. The training is can be thought of as a degree in firefighting.

New faces at the fire halls

Seven new members joined the ranks of volunteer firefighters who tend to the community’s emergency needs.

The Lake Country Fire Department graduated a second batch of recruits through its in-house training program this past summer. Seven new members joined the ranks of volunteer firefighters who tend to the community’s emergency needs.

Assistant Fire Chief Aaron Weller teaches the in-house program. He speaks positively about the camaraderie that training new recruits together as a class has developed within the department. This year’s new members also seem to building the same sort of enthusiastic team spirit.

“I never thought I’d get to be such good friends with Aaron,” says Randy McMillan with good-natured insincerity, drawing a chuckle from his classmates and Asst. Chief Weller alike.

“We have a good time when we train but it is a serious job and everyone knows when it’s time to focus and get down to work,” says Weller.

Apart from the camaraderie, in-house training of members benefits the efficiency of the fire department in ways that outsourcing their education could not. The recruits now come into the department with 290 hours of training versus 42 hours. In an emergency situation that means the new members are immediately able to take an active role in the team’s response.

“Training in-house gives us more familiarity with the station’s equipment and the way it operates,” says Glen Gregory, another one of the new members.

For the hundreds of hours that the members put into their training they receive their Firefighter I and Firefighter II certifications. The pair of courses are the standard that professional firefighters across Canada are expected to have. The Lake Country Fire Department covers the costs associated with courses and in exchange the new recruits agree to serve a minimum of two years in Lake Country.

The new additions to the department are Brandon Marshall, Brian Joubert, Randy McMillan, Alex Wilkes, Glen Gregory, Brady Bloomer, Eric Bauld and Trevor Mertes. They bring the total number of members in the department to 55 with 26 based in Winfield, 16 in Oyama and 13 in Carr’s Landing.

Just Posted

Three candidates drop out of Central Okanagan municipal election

Two running for Peachland/OK West trustee and OK East rural director candidate step aside

Ancestral remains uncovered at Fintry to be reburied

Remains found along Shorts Creek in Fintry Provincial Park during flood remediation measures

Okanagan Rail Trail to officially open

Thursday, Sept. 27, 11 a.m., Oyama Boat Launch, Wood Lake; public welcome

Growing Okanagan tech sector hailed in new report

Study shows sector employees 12, 474 workers and is worth $1.67 billion to regional economy

Order of St. John donates $50,000 to JoeAnna’s House project at Kelowna General Hospital

The donation will help build the home-away-from-home for out-of-town families of patients at KGH

Your weekend weather update

Rain continues to move right across the Okanagan, Shuswap and Similkameen.

B.C. premier apologizes for removal of 1950s totem pole at Canada-U.S. border

First Nations say pole was raised at Peace Arch but removed to make way for tourism centre

Tornado touches down in Ottawa and Gatineau, Que.

Environment Canada says cars and homes have been damaged by severe thunderstorms and high wind gusts

Low risk associated with case of pneumococcal disease in the South Okanagan

No identified risk to the public from recent case of pneumococcal disease with associated meningitis

An unexpected sight: Bear spotted eating another bear in central B.C.

Cheslatta Carrier Nation Chief finds bear eating another bear’s carcass

RCMP confirm death of missing BC teen Jessica Patrick

No details on cause were given. Case is under criminal investigation and police are asking for tips.

CUTENESS OVERLOAD: 2 sea otters hold hands at the Vancouver Aquarium

Holding hands is a common – and adorable – way for otters to stay safe in the water

B.C. teen with autism a talented guitarist

Farley Mifsud is gaining fans with every performance

Yukon man facing new attempted murder charge in B.C. exploding mail case

Leon Nepper, 73, is now facing one charge each of aggravated assault and attempted murder

Most Read