A new interim fire chief has been named by the Regional District of the Central Okanagan to serve residents in the North Westside fire protection district.
Doug Gardiner will, on a temporary basis, take over the chief’s duties for the paid on-call department, serving the communities of Killiney Beach, Westshore Estates, Fintry Delta, Valley of the Sun and La Casa Resort starting Aug. 2.
This interim appointment is needed to provide coverage during a leave of absence that was requested by, and approved for, chief Wayne Carson.
Gardiner is a retired assistant chief training officer who served 27 years with the Saanich Fire Department. He has extensive credentials as a professional firefighter, is experienced with marine rescue and has worked during his lengthy career with paid on-call fire departments.
Regional district fire and inspection services manager Dan Wildeman said: “We want all residents of the fire district to know that the safety and needs of their community are paramount.”
“Dedicated members of North Westside Fire Rescue continue to assist their neighbours by answering calls for medical first response and fire emergencies.”
He added the temporary placement will ensure an experienced professional is in place to provide leadership, training and mentoring heading into a potentially busy fire season.
Senior officers with the department suggested that a retired professional fire chief be considered for this temporary role to ensure community safety and management of the fire department.