Winter storm keeps crews busy

Take the time now to get prepared for the next winter storm

  • Nov. 19, 2015 4:00 p.m.

Wind and water kept Oak Bay fire and the public works departments stacked with calls Tuesday.

Calls for lines down and water issues came  in back-to-back for Oak Bay Fire.

“The morning to mid-afternoon was busier than evening,” said fire chief Dave Cockle. “We had multiple calls for power lines down, drains and water issues, storm-related stuff.”

Among the dozen calls over that time, the wind took out a window on King George Terrace where firefighters helped batten the hatches in the aftermath.

There were fewer calls though, than the heavy rains the weekend before when 15 or 16 calls came in by noon on Saturday, Nov. 14.

“That really taxed the resources, there were so many flooding calls. That was an anomaly too,” Cockle said, noting the tide remained high until about 10 a.m. Saturday. “Until then it starts backing up on the land, the system’s only designed to take so much water.”

Tuesday’s storm came with weather statements issued well ahead.

“We’ve been pretty busy … but we’re getting pretty good information from Environment Canada now,” Cockle said. The department shares that information through social media, the municipal website and the local emergency prep program.

“Our residents are aware the storm is coming,” he said.

At the fire hall, preparation begins with ensuring equipment is ready to roll, and as a storm wanes, restocking begins including packing more ‘fire line’ tape and double-checking the sump pumps.

“Once the storm settled down (Tuesday) the guys were making sure it was all ready to go for the next group of storms … restocking tools and screws and blocks of wood, pieces we need to set people up,” Cockle said.

“And working with public works and police and make sure between the three departments we’re ready for the next one.”

A few key steps can help residents prepare as the municipality does when a storm comes:

• secure garbage cans, lag furniture and other items that could cause damage in wind;

• clean out gutters and storm drains reducing possible flooding;

• stay at home as severe weather arrives;

• have flashlights and extra batteries, and an alternately powered radio in case of power failure;

• have food non-perishable food and one gallon of water per person;

• top off fuel tanks in vehicles;

• have cash on hand, in case bank machines are non-functional;

• expect downed trees and power lines and stay clear of them;

• have a communications plan with your family;

• have essential items on hand to last three days including non-perishable food, water, first aid kit and medication enough for the entire household.

“The biggest step for residents is for them to make sure, if the drain out front has leaves on it, just quickly give it a sweep off so the water can get into the catch basins,” Cockle said.

 

cvanreeuwyk@oakbaynews.com

 

 

Just Posted

Andrew Weaver congratulates New Brunswick on electing first Green caucus

Election win means there are now three provincial Green Party caucuses in Canada

Finalists announced for Victoria’s National Philanthropy Day awards

Finalists are in for National Philanthropy Day awards in Victoria next month.… Continue reading

Tennis twins still acing it, oceans apart

62-year-old brothers at international level

Tents, tarps found at North Saanich homeless camp

No drug paraphernalia at Horth Hill Regional Park, says CRD

GoodLife Fitness Victoria Marathon seeks volunteers

The 39th annual event returns Oct. 7, requires more than 1,600 volunteers

AFN national chief suggests moving Trans Mountain pipeline route

Perry Bellegarde said many Indigenous communities believe in the need to diversify export markets

Judge weighs Cosby’s sentence after declaring him ‘predator’

Montgomery County Judge Steven O’Neill made the decision as he weighed the punishment for Cosby

AFN national chief suggests moving Trans Mountain pipeline route

Perry Bellegarde said many Indigenous communities believe in the need to diversify export markets

U.S. worker charged after video shows him spitting on customer’s pizza

Jaylon Kerley of Detroit is charged with a felony count of food law violations

Around the BCHL: Merritt’s Matthew Kopperud nets Sun Devil scholarship

Around the BCHL is a look at the BCHL and goings-on throughout the junior A world.

Father, 9-year-old son killed in crash along B.C. highway

RCMP say family of five was hit head-on by a pickup truck north of Williams Lake

2 B.C. police departments won’t use new saliva test to detect high drivers

The Dräger DrugTest 5000 is designed to find THC, the high-inducing part of marijuana

Longtime Victoria radio broadcaster Terry Moore passes away

His career spanned six decades and included stops in major North American cities, before ending his career in Victoria

Most Read