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Celista Fire Department recognized for ‘outstanding’ commitment, service to community

Columbia Shuswap Regional District honours its Fire Department of the Year
CSRD board chair Kevin Flynn, left, presents the Fire Department of the Year trophy to Celista Fire Department Capt. Mike Torpe, right, and firefighter Jan Hillier. (CSRD photo)

Celista’s firefighters were recently recognized for going that extra step to protect community safety.

At the April 20 board meeting, the Celista Fire Department (CFD) was honoured as the Columbia Shuswap Regional District (CSRD) Fire Department of the Year. In a related media release, the regional district said the Celista Fire Department, already known for a “tradition of excellence,” stepped up even more last year with “several important initiatives to enhance safety, increase firefighter training opportunities and keep fire insurance rates low for area residents.”

“A notable achievement included the planning and development of a two-storey, live-burn fire building and training area at the Celista Fire Hall, which will serve all three North Shuswap fire departments, as well as expanding regional training opportunities for all CSRD firefighters,” reads the media release.

Other CFD achievements in 2022 include certification of a new dry hydrant as an approved water source for the community, and attainment of Superior Tanker Shuttle Accreditation through the Fire Underwriters Survey, certifying the fire department can move water using tender trucks in quantities similar to an area equipped with fire hydrants.

As a result, the residents of Celista may receive a reduction in their home fire insurance rates, explained the CSRD.

Protective services team leader Derek Sutherland called the CFD’s commitment to the CSRD’s Fire Service values “outstanding.”

“I want to congratulate all the members of the Celista Fire Department for their teamwork and dedication,” said Sutherland. “Chief Roy Phillips deserves tremendous credit for instilling a culture of respect and professionalism within the department.”

As Phillips was unable to attend, Captain Michael Torpe and firefighter Jan Hillier accepted the trophy on behalf of their fire department.

Read more: White Lake firefighters earn Fire Department of the Year honours

Read more: CSRD looks to fill gaps in road rescue services in North Okanagan-Shuswap
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