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Kap Fire Department adds more volunteers to roster

A new survey suggests that fire departments across Canada are going through a similar challenge of recruiting and retaining firefighters, but that doesn’t appear to be an issue in Kapuskasing. Fire Chief Pat Kennedy says he is pleased that 12 new volunteers have been added.

“So it will bring us up to 29 volunteers,” he said. “In the past we have been trying to maintain around 21 and now we are hiring a little more. Just to be able to give us a little buffer and obviously being able to increase more staff on a call.”

Kennedy says that numbers are important when attending a fire.

“At a house fire we need to have 16 people to fight that,” he said. “If we have an incident at the hospital, a big apartment building, or the mill, we should be at 24 firefighters boots on the ground.”

He adds that it can be difficult to recruit locally because of those working at mine sites and some not being able to leave work when there is a call due to staff shortages.

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