Lack of labor leaves rural properties near Merritt without fire protection – Kamloops News


Suspended fire blanket

A First Nation-run fire department near Merritt no longer has the manpower to respond to calls in nearby communities.

The Thompson-Nicola Regional District announced Thursday that it is suspending fire protection services in the Lower Nicola area northwest of Merritt.

The Lower Nicola Indian Band Fire Department had been contracted by the TNRD to provide fire protection to properties on TNRD lands in the area.

“Operationally, at the moment, they don’t have the capacity to respond to calls outside of their own community,” TNRD deputy chief operating officer Jamie Vieira told Castanet.

“That’s why we had to suspend the service. They don’t have enough firefighters right now to respond to those calls.

Vieira said TNRD was contacted by firefighters and told the service was no longer tenable.

Letters have been sent to each property affected by the change.

“The most important thing we tell people is that they should contact their insurance company and let them know because it will impact [insurance coverage]”Viera said.

“Each insurance company will treat it differently, but that’s what people need to know.”


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