Hornby Island Fire Rescue sent Deputy Chief, Doug Chinnery, to participate in a large exercise that took place in Oyster River. The operation was to simulate a wildfire that was approaching a rural subdivision. Several area fire departments took part as well as the RCMP, BC Ambulance, Emergency Social Services, BC Department of Forests, 19 Wing CFB Comox, and Comox Valley Search and Rescue. The fire departments’ involvement was a 1 day classroom and practical training session on Saturday followed by more classroom time on Sunday morning before the actual exercise on Sunday afternoon.
This weekend was of particular interest to HIFR as Hornby Island falls entirely into the wildland urban interface zone and we are at least 2 hours away from any outside help. If there was ever a wildland fire on Hornby, the fire department would be on our own in managing property protection for quite a while.
It was a very well run course and the exercise itself provided much additional insight into how to better protect the Hornby residents and their property from wildland fires. Thanks to Niels Holbek, Chief of Oyster River Fire Rescue for his invitation and his hospitality.