COVID-19 has put a strain on many things since the beginning of 2020, including much needed services like volunteer first responders.
Kingston Midstream wanted to help out two volunteer fire departments in southeastern Saskatchewan by making much-needed major donations through the Richardson Foundation.
The Redvers Volunteer Fire Department was one of these departments. That department alone services several municipalities including a broad area where Kingston Midstream and Tundra Oil and Gas both have facilities.
Redvers Fire Chief Brad Hutton explains that every call they receive, no matter the circumstances, requires his team to wear an extra layer of protection to protect themselves and the public from the coronavirus.
“It is always in the back of your mind, so it is an extra add-on to think about,” Hutton says. Noting that the pandemic also adds a layer of complexity when first responders from different areas arrive to the same scene.
Recently the department has started to upgrade their self-contained breathing apparatus. (SCBA) This is a fast-changing industry with fast-changing regulations and safety requirements.
“The safety of fire department volunteers is paramount and without the SCBA upgrades our department would not be able to meet safety regulations of body regulators.” Hutton said.
Though the department has tried to raise funds locally, it was met with struggles due to COVID-19 restrictions. One of the main fundraising events, Lobsterfest, was expected to bring in a substantial amount of that much needed funding but had to be postponed until the new year.
Kingston Midstream was a saviour to the department by donating more than $50,000 towards the new SCBA equipment, ensuring that the Redvers department can contribute its important work of saving lives across the region.