Canadian Underwriter

British Columbia invests in emergency management and fire service resources database

May 12, 2016   by Canadian Underwriter

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The province of British Columbia has announced nearly $300,000 in funding to help the province’s capacity and capabilities to mitigate and manage emergencies.

iStock_000058863242_SmallB.C.’s Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure said in a press release on Thursday that the one-time funding projects were made possible through Emergency Management BC’s operating budget and efficiencies realized in 2015-16 provincial budget over the course of the fiscal year.

Among the funding commitments is $165,000 to the Fire Chiefs Association of British Columbia to create a database of emergency management and fire service resources in order to facilitate their rapid identification and deployment in emergency situations. This funding will also be used to deliver regional “Team Leader” courses in support of the Fire Training Standard, the release said.

To aid the development of flood plain hazard mapping and modernize professional practice guidelines relating to flood assessments and align with a changing climate, the province is awarding $100,000 to the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of BC. This standardized flood plain and hazard mapping will support the objectives of the new BC Disaster Mitigation Program by enabling analysis and data comparison in different flood locations and improve the identification of risks, vulnerabilities and priorities for mitigation, the ministry reported.

The province has also contributed $25,000 to support a collaborative research project between Emergency Management BC, the Global Earthquake Model Foundation and the Earth Sciences Sector of Natural Resources Canada to conduct earthquake risk assessments. The outcomes of these assessments will provide vital information to address the needs and operational requirements for earthquake events and earthquake risk reduction planning in British Columbia.

According to the ministry, earthquakes are the largest risk to B.C., with more than 3.5 million people – or 80% of the provincial population – likely to experience a “damaging earthquake” in the next 50 years.