Thorsby using neighbouring municipalities to help fight fires
Thorsby is no longer using a fire crew from the city of Leduc to provide services while its dispute with volunteer firefighters continues.
As of 10 a.m. Monday, the village started relying on crews from neighbouring municipalities to respond when fires break out.
Last week, the entire Thorsby fire department walked off the job after fire chief Norm Osness was fired.
Initially, the village hired a crew from the city of Leduc to staff the fire station but it was costing $4,000 a day.
While the new option is cheaper, it could create delays for Thorsby residents, chief administrative officer Jason Gariepy said.
“What would have taken 15 minutes to respond could take 40 minutes or longer depending on the situation,” he said in a news release.
“There is no question this a substantial drop in service level.”
On Saturday, Gariepy met with representatives of the Thorsby fire department.
The village presented a list of expectations including no direct reporting between the fire chief and direct relatives; the need for a clear succession plan; and active participation by the chief at village meetings and budgets.
The village says the firefighters presented a 16-point list of requests.