As part of Fire Prevention Week in Alberta, Rosebud Fire Chief Art Hudson offers up important tips to avoid a small fire form turning into a giant disaster in rural Alberta.
He explained that calling 911 on a landline is ideal because the call is transferred to the "correct" dispatch for the landline's location. So, for example, if you call 911 from Rosebud, the call is transferred to the Strathmore dispatch, who know where you're located and can send the appropriate fire departments. Cell phone 911 calls operate quite differently, said Hudson.
"When you do phone in, identify what county and your proper location. When you use a cell phone, it could go to the Red Deer dispatch [and] they need help in identifying where you are and what fire departments to call. So, that would speed us up if you know what county you're in and what your rural address is."
Hudson said that sometimes people will call and say that they live "east of Rosebud" -- something that is useful in the local area, but not helpful to dispatchers in Red Deer, who usually only dispatch calls in areas north of highway 9.
"Having [your legal land description] by your phone or memorizing it sure can help. The rural address is one thing they're using a lot of if you don't know your legal land, which is your quarter section."
"It helps us immensely. Our guys work on it every practice," elaborated Hudson. "And, when you get in the rural situations, it's hard to remember everyone's place and how to get there. There are some roads that are good for fire trucks and some that aren't."
Fire Prevention Week runs Oct. 8-14. This year's theme is 'Every second counts: Plan two ways out.'