13 mulls future aid plans
district 13 sent an engine to fight fires for the state department of natural
resources (DNR) last summer and as a result was paid over $11,000 for seven days
work. At the October 9 district 13 commissioners meeting chief Mike Campbell
suggested expanding this opportunity by participating in inter-agency wildland
firefighting through the North Whatcom Fire and Rescue Service (NWFRS).
Much of the equipment and training expenses would either be covered or re-imbursed by the state under this plan. Initially, Campbell proposed purchasing two wildland engines, essentially large flat-bed 4x4 pick-up trucks such as the Ford F-550 diesels Campbell used in preliminary cost estimates, with 500 gallon water tanks mounted on the back. The DNR will purchase a similar unit that district 13 will house.
Commissioners listened and encouraged Campbell to pursue the idea but took no action as the discussion will also be a part of the NWFRS board agenda set for Thursday evening in Point Roberts.
At the end of the meeting commissioners were also asked to consider hiring another mechanic as the current workload has exceeded expectations, and the two mechanics currently on staff are also firefighters. The district currently sells rolling stock maintenance services to outside agencies and this would help offset the expense of adding staff. Id like to think about this and continue the discussion next month, said commissioner Butch Hinchey.
The commission then adjourned into executive session to consider land acquisition for the new fire station approved by district voters last month, but no action was taken.