Nova Scotia

Fire chief in Cumberland County says district will be without fire service this winter

The fire chief in Shinimicas, N.S., says bureaucracy is holding up the rebuild of the fire hall that burned down in late April. He says there will be no fire coverage for the district this winter.

Slow progress being made to replace destroyed fire hall

The fire hall in Shinimicas burned in April. (Monica Fisher)

The fire chief in Shinimicas, on Nova Scotia's north shore, says bureaucracy is holding up construction of a new fire hall to replace one that burned down in April.

He said it means there will be no fire coverage for the district this winter.

"As soon as the freeze happens we are going to be pretty much out of service," said Jesse Brine, the department's chief.

The fire destroyed the fire hall and trucks that were inside.

This is what the Shinimicas Fire Department looked like the morning after the fire that ripped through the building in April. (Monica Fisher)

Fire departments in Bridgewater and Hantsport lent trucks to Shinimicas but, with winter weather approaching, the trucks will likely soon be gone.

"We don't have any structure in place to put those trucks in," said Brine. "There's been talk from the departments that are lending us those trucks that they'll be taking them back and I don't blame them."

Almost four months went by before Brine and his deputy chief were invited to make a presentation before the Municipality of Cumberland.

A motion was put forward to move ahead with the design and tender for the fire hall project with up to $770,000 to be funded through insurance proceeds and long-term debt.

Joe van Vulpen, the area councillor, said a new structure is coming before the end of the year.

Councillor says community will have service

"We have a few things that need to be finalized," said van Vulpen, who is not reoffering in the upcoming municipal election.

"But we can't do much until the proceeds start coming through to purchase the materials and there's wells and septic and a lot of things that need to be put in place, engineering plans and electrical plans and those things can't be done overnight."

Van Vulpen said the district will never be without coverage, even if the Shinimicas department loses the trucks. He said the area will be covered off by neighbouring departments that will stretch their coverage areas.

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