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Harbour Grace firefighters strong as well as brave

By Mark Squibb
October 6, 2023 Edition

The Harbour Grace Volunteer Fire Brigade last Saturday hosted the 5th annual Harbour Grace Fire Truck Pull in support of Muscular Dystrophy Canada.

Fire Chief Dave Earle said 15 teams had planned to participate, but the event, which takes place on the Danny Cleary Community Centre parking lot, had to be rescheduled to accommodate an event at the centre. In the end, only three teams – from Harbour Grace, Victoria, and Bay de Grave— could commit to the new date.

“We carried on with just the three teams and we raised just shy of $2,000, with all monies going to Muscular Dystrophy Canada,” said Earle. “As one of the boys said, you’ve got to carry on through the good years and the bad years.”

He said the group may switch things up to make next year’s event “bigger and better.”

Traditionally, the brigade used to hold a food drive at Powell’s Supermarket. Following the closure of the Harbour Grace branch of the chain, the brigade had to brainstorm a new fundraiser idea. The result was the charity fire truck pull, now in it’s fifth year.

This year, the Harbour Grace team proved the fastest, pulling a 35,000-pound fire truck 100 feet in 21.13 seconds.

Over Fire Prevention Week, the department’s members will be visiting schools giving students a chance to look at firefighting gear, like breathing apparatuses and thermal imaging cameras, and meet the firefighters. The department also hosts a poster contest open to students in the area, with the winner and their family being treated to dinner and dessert courtesy of the fire department.

And if you’ve ever considered applying to become a firefighter, Earle said the department is always looking for new members.

Currently, the department boasts 43 members, around 60 precent of whom have their Level 2 Gold Seal certification.

Last month, the brigade received $150,000 in funding to help with the purchase of a new high angle rescue vehicle, as well as $7,000 in health and wellness funding from Trades NL.

Earle said the department is grateful for both contributions, and added the purchase of the high angle vehicle will be an important tool in speeding up response times.

For the second year in a row, members of the Harbour Grace Volunteer Fire Brigade have earned the title of Fire Truck Pull champions, along with all the bragging rights associated with the title. Members of the team include Mike Quinn, Shawn Baker, Will Reynolds, Paul Sullivan, Bobby Lynch, Lucas Baker, Zack Janes, and David Green. Submitted photo

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