An initiative to increase Gibsons residents’ knowledge of the steps they can take to help protect their homes against possible wildfire and what to do in case of a community emergency is set to launch on March 10.
“The recent wildfires in BC and South Australia and the trend toward drier summers have made our residents more aware of the potential threat of wildfires here on the Coast,” said Mayor Bill Beamish. “This educational initiative is a good start toward helping people understand what steps they can take to reduce risks around their own homes and in their neighbourhoods. Accordingly, I strongly encourage our residents to take advantage of this free learning opportunity.”
Funded by a grant from the Province of BC’s “Community Resiliency Investment Program”, the community education plan comprises several components.
The first is a community dialogue to be held on Tuesday, March 10 at 7pm at High Beam Dreams in Gibsons. Guest speakers at the event will include Matt Treit, manager of protective services at the SCRD, as well as representatives from the Gibsons and District Volunteer Fire Department (GDVFD). All are welcome to attend the meeting.
The second component of the education strategy is building awareness of the GDVFD’s neighbourhood emergency preparedness program, which helps individual neighbourhoods implement FireSmart tactics and plan for emergencies. Representatives of neighbourhood groups (defined as five or more households) are encouraged to contact Silas White at email@example.com.
The final component of the FireSmart initiative will be a general education program for the Gibsons community. This is expected to include broad distribution of the Province of BC’s “FireSmart Homeowner’s Manual” which contains comprehensive information on how to assess, and then reduce, the risk of wildfires to your home. The manual is also available online by searching “BC FireSmart”.