SGI is investing $5.6 million to train and equip volunteer firefighters who respond to vehicle collisions on Saskatchewan roads.
The money will be used for a program that will be the first of its kind in Canada. The program’s objectives are:
To fund the delivery of training courses that allow volunteer firefighters to meet minimum standards for auto extrication; and
Purchasing tools and equipment that support that training.
“Advancements in vehicle technology have led to new materials and designs in modern automobiles,” said Minister Responsible for SGI Don Morgan. “Volunteer firefighters are often the first to respond to collisions on highways and rural roads, and it is essential that volunteer fire departments are kept up-to-date with evolving tool developments and adaptations around new car designs.”
“This is excellent news for the nearly 300 volunteer firefighting agencies in Saskatchewan,” said Doug Lapchuk, president of the Saskatchewan Volunteer Firefighters Association. “This program will greatly enhance our abilities to safely and adequately respond to motor vehicle collisions involving entrapment, in far more areas of our province that currently may not have extrication services available in a timely manner.”
The fund will be managed and distributed by the Saskatchewan Public Safety Agency (SPSA), who will consult with SGI, the Provincial Standards Training Committee, fire service stakeholders and other Government of Saskatchewan ministries during program development.
The SPSA will work with the Saskatchewan Volunteer Fire Fighters Association, the Saskatchewan Association of Fire Chiefs and other stakeholders to develop auto extrication training standards and establish a fair and equitable process for purchasing tools and equipment.