Medical service call-outs for the Burns Lake fire and rescue department are making up 25 per cent of total calls in 2021 to date. (Eddie Huband photo/Lakes District News)

Medical service call-outs for the Burns Lake fire and rescue department are making up 25 per cent of total calls in 2021 to date. (Eddie Huband photo/Lakes District News)

Fire department call-outs update

Uptick in calls for September; On pace for an average number of yearly calls

In an Oct. 12 village council meeting, Burns Lake Fire Chief Robert Krause provided council with an update on fire department call-outs in the area for the month of September, and the year as a whole.

Krause told council that September has been a little bit busier then previous months, but the department is on pace for what they consider an average number of calls for the year.

In September, the Burns Lake fire and rescue department (BLFD) received a total of 13 calls. Five calls were for fires or fire alarms, three for motor vehicle incidents, two each for hydro wires and medical calls, and one was for a diesel spill on Highway 16.

“We had a couple of quieter months earlier in the year, but typically October, November and December are the busier months because of more vehicle collisions and road conditions, chimney fires and weather related calls. We anticipate that the fire department might see a slight increase during the final quarter, but the yearly average remains on pace to be similar to previous years,” Krause said to council in the meeting.

The number of calls extrapolated for the year will be approximately 141 according to Krause, compared to 165 calls last year. The yearly average for calls is 135.

In terms of medical calls that the BLFD responded too, there has been an increase to date, but much of that occurred during the spring. “We did have three months; April, May and June, where medical calls were far and above the greatest volume of calls. During those three months, medical calls accounted for 50 per cent of the total calls,” said Krause.

“For the year to date, 25 per cent of total calls have been medical, which is slightly up from last year when it was 20 per cent.”

Since the end of July the medical calls have dropped off considerably, and Krause believes this is partly because B.C. ambulance got extra manning approved, cutting down the medicals calls to the BLFD. The ambulance service will continue to get better as well, as Burns Lake is one of six stations in the north to convert to 24/7 coverage, which is set to occur in late October.

READ MORE: Ambulance station getting full time paramedics

“We really won’t know the final impact until we see what happens when the alpha ambulance positions go into effect. The final quarter of the year will be telling to see whether the fire department’s request for medical assistance changes when the full time paramedics begin work,” said Krause.


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Eddie Huband
Multimedia Reporter
eddie.huband@ldnews.net
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