Strathmore firefighters will soon have some new equipment that will help them be prepared for water rescue situations.

The town council at the regular meeting of council on Wednesday night approved $28,000 to purchase water rescue equipment.

The council was given a status update by Strathmore Fire Department Chief David Sturgeon.

The fire chief explained that in May of this year the fire department’s new Levels of Service policy was approved by Council. Swift Water Rescue was removed. The swift water rescue equipment was sold to Siksika Nation for $36,000.

Sturgeon said that “The new level of service policy specifically for water rescues within town requires the purchase of specific water rescue equipment and that staff are outfitted appropriately and safely to be able to perform the rescue operations.” The fire department requires eight new survival suits, an appropriately sized boat trailer, and a larger boat motor.

The chief noted that the fire department is in need of new survival suits and their current ones have holes in them.

“When they go in the cold water, we have some potential hypothermia issues for the rescuers.” He also explained that a new trailer will allow firefighters to drive right up to the lake and have the ability to disconnect a boat from the truck and into the lake in a short amount of time to provide a rescue.

The cost is approximately $28,000. The Fire Department Capital Reserve is currently $62,426.68. The purchase of the equipment is expected to have no impact on operational budgets.

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