2017-07-19

Three South Shore firefighters part of B.C. bound crew

by Michael Lee

  • <p>BRITTANY WENTZELL PHOTO</p><p>A helicopter seen at McGowan Lake in August 2016 during the Nova Scotia wildfires. The Department of Natural Resources will send a 21-person crew to help fight the forest fires in British Columbia.</p>

Nova Scotia will send its own contingent of firefighters, including three members from the South Shore, out west to help combat the string of wildfires affecting British Columbia's forests.

Bruce Nunn, spokesperson for the Department of Natural Resources (NDR), confirmed two of the firefighters are from Lunenburg County and one is from Queens County.

The names of the firefighters cannot be released for security reasons, said Nunn, but the crew will consist of 20 on-the-ground firefighters and an on-site manager that will help co-ordinate with B.C. fire officials.

The crew will be in B.C. for two weeks, where Nunn said their job "will be to hold that line and keep the fire from spreading."

The 21-person crew will leave Halifax early Tuesday morning on July 18.

"These are DNR staff who are certified and trained well firefighters. They do this kind of work here in Nova Scotia and they are certified to do it elsewhere in Canada."

The Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre (CIFFC), a national body established in the early 1980s that provides forest fire management services to members, made the request for extra resources.

Crews from New Brunswick, P.E.I., Newfoundland and Labrador, and Quebec will join Nova Scotia in fighting the wildfires.

B.C. will cover the costs of the jurisdictions sending help.

Minister of Natural Resources Margaret Miller said in a statement that Nova Scotians have been watching, with great concern, what the people of B.C. are going through.

"Our provincial wildfire fighters are well trained and ready to help. They will be working in very difficult conditions so we offer them our best wishes for a safe return."

DNR says it will ensure proper firefighting resources are maintained within the province.

This story has been edited to reflect the change in date that the fire crew will be leaving.

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