Kimberley News July 13, 1960
Two Fires Reported
Despite the long, dry, hot spell only a few bush fires have occurred in the area and were quickly brought under control.
A fire started up the St. Mary’s River and was extinguished by forestry patrols. Cause was thought to be the sun burning through a glass bottle.
One fire broke out near Wycliffe and another small one near Wood’s Corner but both were quickly extinguished. Causes are unknown.
There have been two small fires in the city, both indicated they had started by Camp fires not properly extinguished. One occurred on unoccupied land near the new subdivision behind Wallinger Avenue and after Kimberley firemen extinguished it, it broke out again a few hours later.
Another occurred on the Lower Blarchmont hill.
Present fire hazard rating given at the forest ranger station at Cranbrook is “high”.
“From all indications,” J.F. Bailey, forest ranger there said “There is no letup in sight of the present dry spell.” He said thunder storms could be expected within the next few days.
Local Society Manned By Volunteers
Kimberley and District Ambulance service is a registered society of 25 members, half of which are drivers and the other half fully qualified attendants. Although the fire department and the ambulance service, 20 of the 25 members are firemen and all are volunteer workers in the ambulance service.
The city provides quarters for the ambulance vehicles and the firemen on duty at the fire hall, voluntarily dispatches ambulance calls to drivers and attendants when the need arises.
An annual $500 grant from the Community Chest is used for operation expenses and any balance is put into a sinking fund with the hope that it will grow large enough to purchase a new ambulance when the need arises. The vehicle presently being used as a standby may then be discarded and the first line vehicle now in operation, may become the standby.
A rotation system of names appears on the fire hall callboard and a ready reference is available of the volunteers off shift during all hours of the day and night.
Sometimes the vehicle can be on the road in four minutes but since they are volunteer drivers and attendants, there is no obligation for them to stand by for duty. This is the only circumstance under which it may take longer to complete a call; if firemen on duty were unsuccessful in reaching a driver immediately and had to place several calls.
A charge of 45 is made to non-community chest members requiring the ambulance service, $3 for Chest members. Many question this charge but it should be remembered that insurance costs covering the many facets of such a service, which are deemed absolutely necessary, is very high.
It costs $300 annually to carry the required amount of coverage. Also all senior citizens are taken to hospital, in the ambulance if necessary, free of charge.
The fully trained, first aid attendants who man the ambulance, in addition to the driver who might also be qualified first aid man, are preferred to attend at the scene of accidents by many doctors.
The original vehicle which is now the standby was a gift from the Kimberley Lions Club. Toward the price of the second ambulance, which then became the first line vehicle, they donated $2500.
The ambulance service provided the necessary medical equipment and the two way radio.