Courtesy of the City of Williams Lake:
All firefighters at the Williams Lake Fire Department have now reached full professional qualification, a distinction held by only a few departments in British Columbia.
Each member of the department – the chief, a deputy chief, two assistant chiefs, three captains, three lieutenants, and 32 paid on-call firefighters – has been certified to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1001 Standard for Professional Firefighter Qualification.
The NFPA 1001 standard is the requirement to become an accredited firefighter in North America. To achieve the certification, firefighters must complete 10 education modules that include both theoretical and practical work.
“For several years, our department has been working to become a fully professionally-qualified fire department,” says City of Williams Lake Director of Protective Services and Fire Chief Des Webster. “This is a monumental achievement for any department, but especially for a paid on-call department like ours.
“This was no easy task: to achieve this required countless hours of additional training which included many hours for these men and women to be away from family and work, on top of their regular training and emergency response. I am very proud of each and every one of these firefighters, and I am extremely proud to be the Fire Chief to such a wonderful and dedicated group of individuals. Thank you also to all of the employers whose co-operation allows their workers to attend emergency calls. Without them there would be no department.”
“Williams Lake is very fortunate to have a fire department that is so dedicated to providing the best service possible to the citizens of Williams Lake,” says Williams Lake Mayor Walt Cobb. “The next time you see one of your firefighters, let them know how much they are appreciated for what they do for this community.”