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Port Stanley News RSS Feed  Editorials I Think I See The Big Picture

by Doug Harvey
I Think I See The Big Picture

The pieces of the puzzle are starting to come together, so now that a location for the Port Stanley Fire Station has been identified, and construction could be starting as early as this year. One must wonder what else is in store for the taxpayers of the Municipality of Central Elgin, and of Port Stanley. One of the biggest reasons for a new Fire Hall, would have to be a spot to house a new bigger, better, and with Quint Specifications Fire Truck.

The Quint Specifications Fire Truck would have to meet NFPA and ULC standards and be based upon a 4 door chassis with a 23 meter (75 feet) ladder, minimum 2300 L. (500 gal.) tank and a minimum 5000 lpm (1050 gpm) pump with a front suction. The vehicle should be equipped with a Class A/B foam system, pre-piped ladder deluge, 45 mm (1 3/4in.) and 65 mm (2 1/2in.) pre-connects, hose bed, storage compartments, and 10 m (30 ft.) of hard or soft suction.

With a Quint Fire Truck, our Fire Department would be able to deliver state of art fire protection, and be a lot more capable to combat a fire, such as in the new proposed nine story Prespa high rise condo that's yet to be built in Port Stanley.

Right now at any Municipality of Central Elgin Fire Station, the longest ladder on any vehicle is 11 meters (35 feet). Currently, aerial coverage beyond the 11 meters (35 feet) is provided from St. Thomas on a delayed response and is not guaranteed, because there is no formal agreement with St. Thomas regarding aerial response. In 2019, as identified in the new Master Fire Plan, Pump 31 is scheduled for replacement with a proposed budget of $800,000, a budget that will require an adjustment for inflation, for a fluctuation in the Canadian currency, and for a sticker price adjustment that will be more in-line with 2019 prices for the Quint Specifications Fire Truck.

In the new Master Fire Plan of February 2016, it also shows that,
. Rescue 33 is due for replacement in 2016, has been tendered, and the price of $427,000 reflects increases in production costs and inflation.
. Pumper/Tanker 22 with an estimated price tag of $370,000 is due for replacement in 2016.
. Chief's Car with an estimated price tag of $45,000 is due for replacement in 2018.
. Pump 12 with an estimated price tag of $380,000 is due for replacement in 2019.
. Rescue 14 with an estimated price tag of $100,000 is due for replacement in 2020.
. Rescue 43 with an estimated price tag of $370,000 is due for replacement in 2021.
. Pump 21 with an estimated price tag of $425,000 is due for replacement in 2024.
. Pumper/Tanker 32 with an estimated price tag of $390,000 is due for replacement in 2026.
. Pumper/Tanker 42 with an estimated price tag of $400,000 is due for replacement in 2029.
. Pump 11 with an estimated price tag of $396,000 is due for replacement in 2031.
. Rescue 23 with an estimated price tag of $370,000 is due for replacement in 2034.
. Pump 41 with an estimated price tag of $435,000 is due for replacement in 2034.

The total estimated cost for the replacement of vehicles to the year 2020 is $2,122,000, and the total estimated cost for the replacement of all these listed vehicles to the year 2034 is $4,908,000.

Some of the recommendations in the Master Fire Plan:
The priority should be given to the filling of the two full time positions, the Administrative position should be funded immediately and the Fire Prevention Officer funded for half a year commencing July 1 2016. And full time thereafter.
. Administrative Assistant March 2016
. Fire Prevention Officer July 2016
. Additional volunteer Fire Fighters, 10 in January 2017 coordinated with other FD’s

New Fire Station

. Purchase or assign the station site 2016
. Confirm the design and prepare/clear the site 2017
. Commence site construction, install Hydro, water and sewer connections, Install foundation 2018
. Construct the new building 2019 close old station and move into the new station 2019/20.

The construction of a new Station will depend upon the timing and design, a minimum of two million Canadian dollars are anticipated for the construction. The proposed implementation strategy will influence the timing and total expenditures for this project.

In a recent Press Release the Municipality of Central Elgin stated, "The property at 4980 Sunset Road has been identified as ideal for the relocation of the Port Stanley Fire Station, and Council has authorized the Mayor and Clerk to execute an agreement of purchase for this property in the amount of $410,000."

By following the recommendations in the new Master Fire Plan, and, if we take the total estimated cost of $2,122,000, which is the replacement cost of the new vehicles to the year 2020, the amount of $410,000, the purchase price of the property at 4980 Sunset Road, and the estimated price of a minimum of two million Canadian dollars for the construction of the new Port Stanley Fire Station, which should be built and be operational by 2019-2020, we come up with over $4,532,000 dollars.

This is a statement from the Master Fire Plan, "Proximity to a fire station is a major factor in determining insurance rates. Residential properties located more than 8 km (5 miles) and commercial properties located more than 5 km (3 miles) from a fire station are normally rated as unprotected. There are a number of residential structures in Sparta and Lynhurst areas that are not within the 8 km limit. The Lynhurst area is protected through an automatic aid agreement with the City of St. Thomas."

I found that the approximate distance from the current Port Stanley Fire Station, to the new proposed location at 4980 Sunset Road, to be around 2.5 km, and that from 4980 Sunset Road, to the Union Fire Station is around 3.1 km. The total distance between the current Port Stanley Fire Station and the Union Fire Station is around 5.6 km, which falls in line with the proximity to a fire station being a major factor in determining insurance rates, before the Municipality of Central Elgin was created. But now if the new Port Stanley Fire Station gets built at 4980 Sunset Road, and knowing that the Union Fire Station is only around 3.1 km away, and knowing that a number of residential structures in Sparta are not within that 8 km limit, the limit that is a major factor in determining insurance rates.

With the Municipality of Central Elgin taking it's first step in the building of this New Port Stanley Fire Hall, one of my questions is, "When is the Municipality of Central Elgin going to move the Union Fire Station"


Last Updated: Thursday, 11 August 2016 12:23:19 PM EST

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