Fire Fighting in Canada

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CAFC names award recipients

Sept. 29, 2008, Whitehorse - Chief William Stewart and Sechelt Chief Fire Officer Bill Higgs have been respectively named full-time Fire Chief of the Year and Volunteer Fire Chief of the Year by the Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs.

September 29, 2008
By Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs

The awards were announced last week at the closing ceremonies of the CAFC
at its annual conference in Whitehorse.

"This year marks the 100th anniversary of our association and so these awards
are particularly meaningful to us,” said incoming CAFC President, Bruce Burrell,
Chief of the Calgary Fire Department. “These two men are now part of a long
history of outstanding achievement among leaders of the Canadian Fire Services
who have earned the highest level of  acknowledgment from their
colleagues.”

Fire Chief William Stewart is a 36-year fire services veteran, having served
in the former City of North York Fire Department prior to amalgamation of the
City of Toronto on Jan. 1, 1998. Toronto Fire Services is the largest in
Canada and the fifth largest in North America, with 82 fire stations and more than 3,100 personnel.

Chief Fire Officer Bill Higgs joined the Sechelt Fire Department as a
volunteer in 1985 and was appointed chief in 1990. The Sechelt Fire
Department has a staff of four, and complement of 40 volunteers serving a
community of 11,000. Sechelt is 40 kilometers north of Vancouver on the
Sunshine Coast.

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There are almost 3,500 full-time, composite and volunteer fire departments
across Canada, with more than 108,000 fire fighting personnel. Volunteers comprise 91
per cent of departments and some 77 per cent of personnel.