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'Lampman fire & ambulance are in crisis:' Services call for more volunteers

Vital meeting will occur on March 30
Lampman Fire Department
The Lampman Fire Department is in need of additional members.

LAMPMAN — Lampman’s fire department and ambulance services require more people to join them.

They are inviting the residents and people from the area to come to an open house. The meet and greet with hotdogs and drinks will take place at the Lampman fire hall on March 30 at 6 p.m.

In their event poster, a picture of which was shared over social media, they said that the services are "in crisis" and that "there is a potential risk of losing these services."

"Once they are gone, we can't get them back. We need your help to keep them in our community," said the poster.

The services need volunteer firefighters, emergency medical responders and medical first responders. It takes a minimum of 30 minutes for other area services to get to Lampman if local first responders don't have the resources to take the call.

Lampman fire chief Grant Palmer said they currently have 15 trained firefighters, but they are volunteers and have jobs. Some work out of town, which means they are not always available.

"We're just short on members. During the week, lots of people are working out of town and are not around, so we just need more people to help out," Palmer said.

"I speak on behalf of the fire department. What will happen during the day is, if we don't have enough people to go, then we have to call on a different service to come in and cover for us. So that takes extra time. For instance, if let's say we're on the west side of Lampman, which we cover, we'd have to call in Estevan, or for farther east of us, we'd have to call, let's say, Alameda or Carlyle, depending what the situation is, to come in and do what we're supposed to do because we don't have enough members to do it that can show up. That's what we're facing."

It's hard to put a number on how many firefighters the service would need to confidently maintain the operations, as it depends on how many volunteers are available to respond at any given time.

"We'll take as many as we can get, the more, the better," Palmer said.

He added that they did have more members before, but some relocated and with some others, their job situations changed. And with many people working, the daytime is usually where they are lacking manpower.

"We just don't have enough to cover the area, especially during the daytime hours, working hours," Palmer said.

To become a firefighter, one would need CPR First Aid certificates and then go through the training provided by the department. But the main thing is the wish to help the community.

"Basically, if you want to volunteer, you got lots of energy and you're willing to help out your community, come on board," Palmer said.

The Lampman Fire Rescue has all equipment needed for the job. Their call volumes vary every year depending on many aspects. Last year with dry weather they had more calls, and they also respond to rescue calls. Palmer said they average 10-25 calls for service a year, plus they have training activities.

More information about how emergency services operate and what it would take to join them will be provided at the open house.

"We're just having like a recruitment night, for people to come and see what we have, what we can do, what's all it takes, what's all involved. Just get people to come to the fire hall and see what it's all about," Palmer said.

The organizers asked that due to "limited seating and the severity of the situation", only people 16 years of age and older attend the event.

The Mercury is waiting on the comments about the situation with Lampman EMS from the Saskatchewan Health Authority.