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Key N.S. flood alert to ‘shelter in place’ faced delays that need review: firefighter

August 4, 2023 
By The Canadian Press

Aug. 4, 2023, Windsor, N.S. – Volunteer firefighters say an alert warning people not to leave their homes during recent flooding in a rural Nova Scotia county took close to two hours to send, and the process needs to be reviewed.

Deputy Chief Brett Tetanish of the Brooklyn Fire Department said in a recent interview that he asked the emergency dispatcher at 1:12 a.m. on July 22 to request an Alert Ready notice calling for residents to “shelter in place” and to call 911 if they needed rescue.

At the time, he was in his fire truck and witnessing widespread washouts of roads and damage to bridges.

However, the first alert prepared by the local Emergency Management Office, part of the Municipality of West Hants, was not issued until 3:06 a.m.


Chief Jason Cochrane of the Brooklyn Fire Department said training is needed to ensure requests move more quickly, and Tetanish says there are “lessons to be learned” from the delay.

Officials with the Municipality of West Hants were unavailable to comment on why the delay occurred.

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