Fireside chat November 2015

I hope all of you have had a great year. It has been quite a year for me and it will come to a close with the honor of marrying the most wonderful and beautiful woman in my life. We are looking forward to moving to Point Roberts in the near future and becoming full time residents of this wonderful community.

Stay safe,
Chief Carleton
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SERVICE
As I move into my fourth year as your Fire Chief, I take special pride in serving among such a strong and dedicated group of volunteer professionals. Your Point Roberts firefighters spend countless hours training to improve their knowledge and skills to better serve their neighbors and community. More than 40 volunteers, who are second to none in their commitment of keeping you healthy and safe, provide hundreds of staff hours of coverage each week to ensure that your emergency needs are met 24/7, helping make this a great place to live and work.

From your elected Board to the administrative staff, your fire department is a total team effort. Commissioners Jeff Wilmot, Stan Riffle, and Bill Meursing represent you through leadership and direction in their absolute obligation, to every person in our community, of providing the best emergency services that can be formed through our financial means while responsibly saving for future needs. It is our commitment to be there for you, not just when the need is urgent and immediate, but by every means we can muster for every aspect of community life.

This past June, it all came together as our members were successful at resuscitating a cardiac arrest patient at CBP. A large crowd participated in the commendation ceremony for all agencies involved, highlighting the interagency cooperation from CBP, Airlift Northwest, Sheriff’s Office, and the Fire District. It reminded us again why it is we do what we do, why we work so hard to be ready, and why we get up every day to do it all over again – we do it for you! Thank you for letting us be a part of Point Roberts.

COMMUNITY OUTREACH
We welcome you to visit us any time and learn what your fire department does for you. For the past several years, our facility has been available for the public to use, and we have been publishing valuable information on the District’s website at www.wcfd5.com which includes, however not limited to, monthly meeting videos and meeting minutes. You can also enjoy community events at our headquarters involving a range of organizations or participate in CPR classes, safety training, or other outreach events. We understand your fire station is also an obvious location for public shelter in case of a disaster, where the fire station’s structural support and our industrial generator stand ready to provide emergency operations for extended periods of time. To learn more about our various efforts, you can visit our website at www.wcfd5.com or make arrangements to visit us at the fire station. We look forward to meeting you!

INSURANCE UPGRADE
The Washington Survey and Rating Bureau (also known as ISO in other areas of the country) rates communities on the quality of fire protection available; these ratings impact the rates charged to home owners and businesses for insurance costs. The District’s rating was upgraded recently to reflect improvements in coverage, training and communications to name a few. Contact your insurance provider to see if you qualify for a reduced rate as a result of this change. The WSRB letter is on our website homepage for your use.

COMMUNICATIONS UPGRADE
The District’s new communication equipment is now operational. We have conducted additional testing and our findings are showing remarkable improvement in paging and emergency radio communication. Another large study will be done using computer equipment from multiple points around our community in order to graph the new coverage. Volunteers who have historically had poor paging results due to the location of their homes are reporting excellent results today.

EVENTS
The District’s annual Haunted House is coming up on Saturday, October 31st at the Fire Hall, located at 2030 Benson Road. We will be welcoming participants from 2-5pm.

SAFETY TIPS
One of the biggest threats to family safety as winter sets in arises from alternative heating sources—space heaters, wood stoves, fireplaces, and the like. Please have working smoke detectors in every bedroom and level of your home. The District has offered free smoke detectors for the past several years, so please contact us if you need smoke detectors or have questions. Please DO NOT use portable heaters that burn fuels such as petroleum products inside enclosed spaces. Many of these devices do not have proper ventilation to the exterior and can cause death through the accumulation of carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide detectors are available locally and commercially from many hardware and home improvement vendors, and can add materially to your home safety by alerting you when carbon monoxide—a byproduct of all forms of combustion—accumulates in your home or business.

Your health and safety are our number one concern. We keep a variety of general safety information found outside the main office, or you can visit www.nfpa.org/safety-information. If you have questions, call me—I am always willing to do whatever I can to help if it is within my means.

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