Nova Scotia

Volunteer fire department in Cumberland County moves closer to rebuilding after fire

The Municipality of the County of Cumberland has approved two tenders to help the Shinimicas Volunteer Fire Department rebuild its fleet after fire destroyed vehicles and the fire hall in April 2020.

Fire hall, trucks that were inside destroyed by fire last April

Jesse Brine, the chief of the Shinimicas District Fire Department, says his department expects the new facility to be open in a year. (Paul Palmeter/CBC)

After more than a year of delays, the rural community of Shinimicas in Cumberland County is a big step closer to getting its fire department back. 

A fire in April 2020 destroyed the fire hall and three trucks that were parked inside.

The Municipality of the County of Cumberland announced Friday that it had approved two tenders that would allow the volunteer fire department to rebuild its fleet. 

The tender to replace the building was approved on June 2. Friday's approval of just over $1.2 million will provide for the replacement of a command vehicle, a pumper and a pumper tanker. 

Fire Chief Jesse Brine said he's relieved that the tenders have been approved, but there's a lot of work still to be done. 

"It's just another stepping stone in the right direction," he said. 

Brine said he is hopeful that the new facility will be ready this time next year. 

Describing the past year as "quite challenging," Brine said having vehicles spread out across the district, rather than in a central location, made responding to calls much more difficult. But they managed, he said.

Brine said there was initially word that the fire department would not be rebuilt. He's grateful that the community fought to have it restored. 

According to Brine, the department serves approximately 8,000 residents during the peak summer season. 

The Shinimicas fire hall and three trucks were destroyed in a fire last year (Submitted by Monica Fisher)

He noted that one of the reasons for the long delay in moving the project ahead was that the insurance company took over a year to fully pay out a settlement. 

 

With files from Paul Palmeter

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