Churchill Needs New Fire Truck

Churchill is known as the polar bear capital of the world. With 800 or so year – round residents and up to 3,000 in the high polar bear season, the town changes complexion quite a bit during the year. One thing that doesn’t change however is the need for fire fighting equipment in this wild and often harsh environment.

Since fires seem to often occur at most inopportune times, the need for the most up – to – date equipment is of the utmost necessity. Fires in the winter, which is longer in Churchill than many other towns, seems to be the most catastrophic. With frigid temperatures and fierce high winds, fires can rage out of control and destroy wood framed buildings at an incredible pace. In the last decade alone Churchill has lost some valuable and iconic structures. Just this past year Metis Heritage Hall was lost from fire. The 22 volunteers which comprise the total fire fighting force in Churchill need all the help they can get!

Northern Nights hotel Churchill, Manitoba

Northern Nights hotel burning down in Churchill 2011. Katie de Meulles photo.

What they are in most critical need of at this time in history is a new water pumper truck. With nearly a 50 year – old 1969 GMC pumper, older than 21 of the 22 department volunteers, repairing the truck at this point is not an option. Costs of labor for many of the repairs alone would outweigh the benefit of trying to squeeze a few more years of service from the relic.

With new pumpers costing an estimated $400,000 – $1,000,000, the town has resorted to locating a very reliable used vehicle for $100,000. Upgrading to a “newer” truck will provide tremendous support for the volunteers. Immediate and reliable response is what matters and this newer truck will help provide such.

With the goal of raising $50,000 toward the purchase the town has set up a gound me page to assist in reaching the plateau within the year. If you have been to Churchill or have a place in your heart for this incredibly unique place on our small planet please go and fund a truly worthy cause. Every little bit helps and we thank you in advance from Churchill Fire Department!

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