Coronation fire department annual report

Written by Terri Huxley

Fire Chief Chris Brearly presented the annual report to Coronation council at their regular meeting on Dec. 6 to give a brief report on this year’s happenings at the local Coronation Fire Department.

“We had an extremely busy year for 2021,” said Brearly. “Maybe ever.”

He shared that the department received 47 calls in total, mainly from the drought over the summer which caused several fires.

The total included seven motor vehicle accidents, four medical assists, four equipment fires, 20 wildland fires, 10 false alarms and one search and rescue.

The department gained two new members but lost one due to moving away.

As for the projects completed this year, Brearly shared his dissatisfaction in the radio tower in terms of efficiency although slightly better than the former system with less signal.

“There were big calls south of town where reception is certainly better,” he said but added that more discussions will need to take place for long-term planning.

On the upper hand, dispatch has a new system that connects to a members phone through an app which has made call-outs much easier as members now have more notice when a call-out comes in.

“It gives our members a lot more warning,” said Brearly.

Bunker gear has a 10-year life period. The department replaces a couple of them every two years to ensure they do not need to be all replaced at the same time for cost effectiveness.

Brearly shared with council that prices for this important equipment have ‘gone through the roof’ by doubling in cost.

The department has plans to be more active in the community and has two meetings a month, one to keep skills sharp in practice and a second for in-house learning and direction.

Eleven of the total 47 calls this year were mutual aid calls where other departments attended the scene.

“So having the technology of the app and good communications between fire departments I think has worked really well this year. Especially given the busy year we had. 

“There is no doubt in my mind that a call-in on help from other areas can really help to reduce the damage caused by fires,” he said.

Brearly added his appreciation for farmers and businesses who lent a helping hand during some of the massive fire outbreaks this year.

Council and Brearly agreed to put a list together for equipment’s lifespan for replacement planning purposes and budgeting.


Terri Huxley

ECA Review

About the author

Terri Huxley

Terri grew up on a grain farm near Drumheller, Alberta with an eye for the beautiful and uncharted. Living in such a unique and diverse area has helped her become the photographer and reporter she is today.

Coming from the East Central region getting this newspaper on her dinner table growing up, it helped her understand the community she now serves.

In May 2019, Terri was awarded Alberta Weekly Newspaper Association (AWNA) Canada's Energy Citizens Photographic Awards Sports Action – First Place as well as first for the same sports action image nationally with the Canadian Community Newspaper Association (CCNA). Fast forward to 2020, she has won second in the same category for the AWNA.