Barriere firefighters want their expenses covered when responding to highway crashes within the municipality’s boundaries.
Mayor Bill Humphreys said the matter will be raised as a resolution at the Union of B.C. Municipalities conference in Vancouver this month.
Humphreys and fire Chief Al Kirkwood don’t believe Barriere taxpayers should pay for fuel, wear and tear on vehicles or equipment costs when emergency crews respond to accidents involving people from outside the community.
“We were hoping we’d have an agreement and schedule of rates when you use this truck or that truck on a call,” Humphreys said Thursday.
He’s been trying to get the Insurance Corporation of B.C. to pay these expenses, but to no avail. Humphreys hopes taking the matter to UBCM will help.
In an email, ICBC spokesman Adam Grossman said the corporation doesn’t collect premiums to cover this kind of cost, nor is there an ICBC policy that has to do with compensating emergency services.
“ICBC covers the costs our customers are legally responsible for. Motorists are not responsible for fire department charges, which are a core municipal service,” Grossman states in the email.
In Chase, any expenses fire crews incur while responding to an emergency within the town’s borders are covered by the village, said CAO Joni Heinrich.
When attending calls outside village limits, a claim is made to Emergency Management B.C., which compensates the expenses according to a schedule of callouts, she said.
For example, a callout requiring a rescue truck is a $125 claim and an extrication or embankment rescue warrants $250 an hour, said Heinrich.
Upon hearing this, Humphreys said he will follow up with the Village of Chase to learn more about the claim process.