Additional Wildfire Support
If the province is experiencing significant fire activity, the BC Wildfire Service may call upon other agencies for additional resources such as equipment, personnel and/or aircraft.
The assistance the BC Wildfire Service receives from other jurisdictions consists of highly trained, specialized personnel and resources that are instrumental to our wildfire response capabilities. Bringing this assistance in from outside of the province does not take work away from local, qualified and available companies.
Out of Province Personnel and Equipment
Out of province resources can be crucial during periods when the province is responding to a very high number of fires, or particularly active fires requiring many resources. The BC Wildfire Service has agreements in place with several jurisdictions enabling the province to call upon its neighbours for help.
Mutual aid agreements in place allow for the sharing of personnel and resources both within the jurisdictions of Canada and, if necessary, internationally.
Conversely, during periods of minimal fire activity the BC Wildfire Service may make personnel and resources available to other agencies, with all costs being covered by the receiving jurisdiction.
Emergency (Type 3) firefighters are a contingency resource who are provided basic training (including completion of the S-100 Basic Fire Suppression and Safety course) and called to action when other firefighting resources are running short. These firefighters need close supervision, have very limited experience and usually perform mop-up, patrols, camp demobilisation and other support functions.
Assistance from the Canadian Armed Forces is only requested when absolutely necessary. While highly organized and physically fit, military crews still need extensive training to enable them to work safely and effectively on the fireline. Military assistance was last required in British Columbia during the summer of 2003.