Category Archives: Canada

Vermont | 18th annual rabies bait drop scheduled to begin this week

Eighteen of the 31 animals that have tested positive for rabies so far this year have been in the state’s most populated region, Chittenden County. The 18th Annual Rabies Bait Drop will take place (weather permitting) Aug. 11-18 targeting eight Vermont counties, including all of Chittenden County, to help stop the spread of the potentially fatal viral disease.

Baits will be dropped into rural parts of Vermont, primarily across the northern region along the Canadian border, from low-flying planes for two days. Hand placed baits will be distributed in urban areas as part of a nationally coordinated effort led by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Wildlife Services (USDA).

One reason so many cases are being detected in Chittenden County, said State Public Health Veterinarian Robert Johnson, DVM, is that police in Burlington and South Burlington are doing a good job of capturing animals that are acting strangely and making sure they are tested.

“The USDA may increase the dose of vaccine in the baits this year due to the number of cases in densely populated areas,” Dr. Johnson said.

The Health Department expects no adverse health effects for people (including children) or pets that may come into contact with the baits and vaccine. The bait cannot cause rabies but people should keep their dogs on a leash during the bait drop period.

Anyone who finds the bait should leave it untouched, unless it is discovered on a lawn or driveway. Remove the bait with a glove and wash your hands with soap and water.

The sweet-scented baits are slightly larger than a quarter and come in blister packs covered by a dark green waxy coating.

Rabies is a fatal viral disease found mainly in raccoons, foxes, bats and skunks that can infect domestic animals and people as well. The virus can spread through the bite, or contact with saliva, from an infected animal. Rabies vaccine – if given soon after a human is bitten by a rabid animal – is highly effective. Once the signs and symptoms of rabies start to appear, there is no treatment and the disease is almost always fatal.

Avoid any animal that shows strange behavior. Do not try to trap or capture the animal, but instead call the state’s Rabies Hotline at 1-800-472-2437 (1-800-4-RABIES), or in-state 802-223-8697.

For more information visit: http://healthvermont.gov/prevent/rabies/Rabies.aspx

New South Wales | NSW firefighters deploy to Canada to help battle massive wildfires

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14 emergency services personnel from NSW are being deployed to British Columbia to assist with their current fire emergency.

The eight NSW RFS personnel, along with five from NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service and one from Fire and Rescue NSW, will be assisting with incident management and fire ground supervision at the Mount McAllister fire and Chelaslie River fire.

These 14 NSW personnel are joining a total of 81 from across Australia being deployed.

Manitoba | 40 firefighters head west to battle wildfires

Two Manitoba fire-fighting crews have been deployed to help battle forest fires in the Northwest Territories and British Columbia.

One crew of 20 has been deployed to Kamloops, while a second team of 20 has been sent to Yellowknife.  These initial attack personnel are specially trained ground crews and will be assigned their tasks upon arrival.

One Manitoba air attack officer has just returned from directing water bombers on a fire suppression mission in the Northwest Territories and another air attack officer may soon be sent to perform similar duties.

Manitoba | Summer flood bulletin #25 – July 24 2014

Flood Response

  • The Manitoba government, municipalities and other partners continue to work together on flood recovery efforts in western Manitoba.
  • Early estimates indicate that flood response and repairs will exceed $200 million.  This does not include agricultural losses as they continue to be assessed.
  • The provincial state of emergency continues for areas around the Lake St. Martin Channel and along the lower Assiniboine River including the town and Rural Municipality (RM) of Portage la Prairie and the RMs of St. François Xavier, Headingley, Cartier, Macdonald and Grey.
  • As of July 23, approximately 54 people remain evacuated as a result of summer flooding.
  • As of July 23, Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada reported a total of
    505 evacuees from First Nation communities affected by all flooding events in 2014.
  • Manitobans affected by flooding can get more information on clean up, mold remediation,
    well-water safety and other issues in After the Flood: What to do when floodwaters recede,which is available at www.gov.mb.ca/flooding.

Assiniboine River – Portage Diversion

  • This morning, flows on the Portage Diversion are approximately 16,250 cfs, reduced to less than half of the 33,000 cfs seen last week during peak flows.
  • Flows on the Assiniboine River dikes between Portage la Prairie and Headingley are 15,000 cfs, down from 18,000 cfs last week.
  • Provincial crews are working with the RM of Portage la Prairie to remove flood protection at the Hoop and Holler Bend and surrounding area.

Lake Manitoba

  • Lake Manitoba is forecast to peak at 814.8 feet by early August.
  • The Lake St. Martin Emergency Outlet Channel is expected to stay open until the spring of 2015 and will help bring the Lake St. Martin water level to approximately 802 ft. by late November 2014.
  • The Fairford River Water Control Structure continues to be operated for the most discharge possible.  Outflows are forecast to reach approximately 15,800 cfs when Lake Manitoba reaches peak levels.
  • Lake Manitoba is currently approximately 1.1 ft. below unregulated levels (the levels that would have occurred with no provincial water control infrastructure) because of high outflows through the Fairford River Water Control Structure.
  • Maps have been prepared for possible flood scenarios on Lake Manitoba and can be found at:  www.gov.mb.ca/mit/floodinfo/floodoutlook/watersheds_data_maps.html.

Disaster Financial Assistance

  • To date, the province has received nearly 600 private applications for Disaster Financial Assistance and another 35 applications from municipalities and other groups.
  • A temporary Disaster Financial Assistance Recovery Office will remain open in Brandon until Friday, July 25 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  It is located at 1601 Van Horne Ave. E., with access from the south entrance.  Staff will answer inquiries and take applications.
  • Application forms and further details about the disaster financial assistance program are available through the Manitoba Emergency Measures Organization online at www.manitobaemo.ca, or by calling 204‑945‑3050 in Winnipeg or 1-888-267-8298 (toll-free).  Applications are also available at most municipal offices.

Stress and Anxiety Resources

  • The scale and scope of the summer flood is very challenging for affected Manitoba families.  There are resources to help deal with the stress and anxiety that result from crisis situations.
  • Resources are available at www.gov.mb.ca/flooding/managing_stress.html.

Road Information

  • Manitoba Infrastructure and Transportation reports sections of many provincial and municipal roads in western Manitoba have closed or marked with caution due to flooding.
  • There has been considerable damage to bridges and culverts.  Repair work is already underway. More than 30 structures will need to be replaced and another 50 will require repairs.
  • Drivers are reminded to assume bridges may be damaged on all roads.  Reduce speed and restrict weight to 10 tonnes.  Drive with caution and obey road closed signs.
  • For current highway conditions, call 511, visit www.manitoba.ca, www.mb511.ca or follow the Twitter account at www.twitter.com/MBGovRoads.

Up-to-date flood information can be found at www.gov.mb.ca/flooding/, on mobile devices at www.manitoba.ca or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/MBGov.

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Manitoba | Province receives clinical oversight report on STARS

The Manitoba government has released the report and recommendations of the Clinical Oversight Committee on the Shock Trauma Air Rescue Society (STARS) air ambulance service, led by Dr. Brian Postl, Health Minister Erin Selby said today.

“Our first priority is to deliver safe, high-quality care to Manitoba families.  We are confident these recommendations and the hard work of all involved will ensure a strong future for STARS and the valuable service it provides, particularly for those in rural Manitoba,” Minister Selby said.  “The province is grateful to Dr. Postl and all the medical experts who have contributed to the work of the Clinical Oversight Committee.

The panel’s recommendations are focused on ensuring patient safety, quality of service and public confidence in emergency services.  Recommendations of the Clinical Oversight Committee include:

  • the suggestion for STARS to pursue Canadian Medical Association accreditation;
  • the establishment of a provincial paediatric transport team;
  • the establishment of an operations liaison committee, led by the Office of Medical Director and a standards committee;
  • the further integration into the provincial emergency medical services system through the Medical Transportation Coordination Centre; and
  • the resumption of inter-facility transports.

The last recommendation was initiated on July 2, 2014, due to the provincial state of emergency related to summer flooding and agreed upon by Dr. Postl and the medical experts on the Clinical Oversight Committee.

“Emergency medical care is complex and I’d like to thank the participants in the process for their insight and assistance in making the STARS service even better for Manitobans,” said Postl.

“With this report, the clinical oversight panel has completed its work addressing patient safety issues.”

Manitoba Health will complete the transfer of the STARS Service Purchase Agreement (SPA) to the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority, effective Aug. 1.  This process has been underway for several months, Minister Selby said, and it will enable medical crews to enhance their experience and training in Winnipeg’s high-volume emergency and critical-care medical system.

“We are dedicated to providing Manitobans with the highest quality care possible,” said Andrea Robertson, president and CEO, STARS.  “We welcome the recommendations and look forward to working with community partners to save lives.”

Since arriving in Manitoba in 2011, STARS has been dispatched to 721 missions resulting in the transportation of 486 patients.

The Clinical Oversight Committee report can be found at www.gov.mb.ca/health/ems/stars

Newfoundland and Labrador | Govt reaches tentative funding agreement with Community Ambulance Operators Association

The Provincial Government has reached a tentative funding agreement with the Newfoundland and Labrador Community Ambulance Operators Association which represents community-based non-profit ambulance operators across the province.

It includes a total increase in funding of $1.6 million over the term of the agreement and base wage increases for ambulance attendants.

“These operators work in rural parts of our province to help meet the health care needs of our citizens. Our government has demonstrated its commitment to fair negotiations and I am pleased all parties have worked together to reach this tentative funding agreement.”
- The Honourable Charlene Johnson, Minister of Finance and President of Treasury Board

The agreement is valid until April 2017 and includes funding for a $1 per hour base wage increase in each of 2014, 2015, and 2016.

“We are pleased that a tentative agreement has been reached with the association representing community-based operators who play an essential role in the delivery of health care services for the people of our province. This agreement will strengthen road ambulance services in rural parts of Newfoundland and Labrador, provide wage increases to rural paramedics and support operational improvements.”
- The Honourable Clyde Jackman, Minister of Health and Community Services

The tentative agreement outlines funding amounts of approximately $5.4 million in 2014-15, $5.6 million in 2015-16, and $5.8 million in 2016-17, and will be finalized in the coming weeks. The Newfoundland and Labrador Community Ambulance Operators Association represents 22 ambulance operators across the province.

VITAL SIGNS

  • The Provincial Government has reached a tentative funding agreement with the Newfoundland and Labrador Community Ambulance Operators Association.
  • It includes funding for a $1 per hour base wage increase in each of 2014, 2015, and 2016.
  • This tentative agreement will strengthen road ambulance services in rural parts of Newfoundland and Labrador, provide wage increases to rural paramedics and support operational improvements.
  • The agreement is valid until April 2017 and will be finalized in the coming weeks.

BC | Evacuation Order & Alert: Smith Creek Fire (Central Okanagan Regional District); Updated July 21 at 12PM

The Central Okanagan Regional District has lifted the Evacuation Order for for additional streets in the Tallus Ridge Neighbourhood. The Evacuation Order remains in effect for eight large, rural, private properties in the interface areas immediately above Smith Creek, Tallus Ridge and Shannon Woods Neighbourhoods, including all properties accessed off Dixie Road. The Evacuation Order area, including parks, trails and public and private lands, remains closed to the public, including Wildhorse Park and Tallus Park.

The Smith Creek Fire remains active and residents returning to their homes will remain on Evacuation Alert and should be prepared to leave their homes on short notice. The public must stay out of fire-affected areas for their own safety and obey all warning and hazards signs.

Residents are asked if they see any fire activity related to the Smith Creek fire, not to call 9-1-1 as crews will still be actively working in the area and monitoring the situation.

An Evacuation Alert remains in effect for the following areas:

The following roads in the Smith Creek Neighbourhood:

  • Asquith Road
  • Bridal Hill Court
  • Bridal Hill Drive
  • Copper Ridge Drive
  • Copper Ridge Court
  • Copper Ridge Place
  • Copper Ridge Way
  • Doucette Drive
  • Harold Road
  • Ironridge Place
  • Ironridge Road
  • Rhinestone Road
  • Shetler Drive
  • Sandberg Road
  • Sageview Road
  • Saddleridge Drive
  • Sugosa Place
  • Salish Road
  • Smith Creek Road
  • Stone Ridge Drive
  • Summerview Place
  • Summerview Court
  • Telcor Place
  • Twin Place
  • Whispering Hills Drive
  • Wild Horse Drive

The following roads in the Alexandria Neighbourhood:

  • Alexandria Way
  • Shannon Lake Road

The following roads/properties in the Tallus Ridge Neighbourhood:

  • Boulder Lake Boulevard
  • Cobblestone Road
  • Pebble Place
  • Stone Grove Crescent
  • Tuscany Drive
  • Tallus Ridge Drive including 2390 Tallus Ridge Drive

The following roads in the Shannon Woods Neighbourhood:

  • Shannon Woods Drive
  • Shannon Woods Place
  • Shannon Woods Way
  • Shannon Woods Cres
  • Shannon Hills Drive
  • Shannon Hills Place
  • Shannon Heights Court
  • Shannon Heights Place
  • Big Sky Drive
  • Mountains Hollow Lane
  • Paramount Drive
  • Ryser Place
  • Tallus Heights Drive
  • Tallus Green Crescent
  • Tallus Green Place

The Evacuation Order is still in effect for:

  • 2850 Dixie Road
  • Remainder Part West ½ DL3478,
  • Remainder Part East ½ DL3478 & DL3478
  • Remainder Part North ½ of W ½ DL3485
  • Lot 27 DL 3485 Plan KAP58401
  • Lot 1 DL2600 & 3793 Plan KAP84074
  • Remainder DL2600 Plan KAP44535
  • Remainder DL3793 Plan KAP44535

The Evacuation Alert has been lifted for:

  • Bartley Road
  • Lenz Road

For the latest information and updated maps of the Evacuation Order and Evacuation Alert visit www.cordemergency.ca.

When returning home, be cautious in your neighborhood and watch out for:

  • Charred power poles and trees that may be unstable and fall.
  • Live power lines lying on the ground.
  • Small fires that may flare up without warning.
  • Ash pits, which are holes filled with hot ash created by burned trees.

Interior Health provides useful information for residents returning to their homes. It deals with exposure to smoke from forest fires, food safety, water quality and septic tanks and disposal fields.

The public is requested to stay out of fire-affected areas for their own safety.

For those who remain on evacuation orders, the Emergency Support Services reception centre at Mount Boucherie Senior Secondary School will continue to operate. Residents remaining on Evacuation Order will need to return to the reception center to receive additional food and accommodation vouchers. Volunteers will do their best to process evacuees as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Updates are also available on the CORD Facebook page and Twitter feed @CO_Emerg.

The public information line is 250 469-8490.

NOTE:

An Area Restriction Order is in effect immediately for areas surrounding the Smith Creek wildfire.

BC | Evacuation essentials for pet owners

During an emergency, British Columbians are responsible for more than just their own personal safety.

They need to consider how they will keep their pets, animals and other furry friends safe as well. It’s important to know how to prepare for an emergency and where you can get help with your animals during an evacuation.

In addition to having a 72-hour emergency kit for your family, you must also prepare one for your pet. Preparing in advance will increase the likelihood that your animals remain safe and healthy during an emergency.

Your pet survival kit should include:

  • 72-hour food supply including bowls and a can opener if required
  • 72-hour supply of water for your pet
  • Leash, harness, muzzle
  • Pet carrier
  • Medical and vaccination records, medication and veterinarian contact information
  • ID tags and microchip number
  • Blankets and toys

Before an evacuation, find out what resources are available in your community for pets and animals during an emergency. It may be possible to preregister with the local emergency animal rescue group in your area so members can assist you in preparing for your animals during an emergency.

If emergency officials order your community to evacuate to a safer location, it’s important to remember that if it’s not safe for you to stay home, it’s not safe for pets to remain there either. Make the evacuation reception centre your first point of contact and ask them to put you in touch with any local animal assistance organization. Experienced volunteers at Emergency Social Services reception centres will receive pets at reception centres and move them to a safe place where they will be cared for until you’re able to care for them.

The Canadian Disaster Animal Response Team (CDART) is on hand at the reception centre in the District of West Kelowna to support more than 2,500 residents affected by the Smith Creek wildfire. CDART assisted with more than 250 animals including dogs, cats, chickens, turkeys, pigeons, horses, fish and pet birds by finding foster care for animals brought to reception centres.

Learn more:

For up-to-date information on evacuation orders and public safety notices, visit your local authority information sources and: www.EmergencyInfoBC.gov.bc.ca

For more details about CDART supports and activities, visit: http://www.cdart.org/index.htm

For individuals concerned about livestock during an evacuation, visit: http://www.agf.gov.bc.ca/emergency/Evacuation/Evacuation.htm

For more information about animal care, visit: http://bit.ly/UkyM8C

Newfoundland and Labrador | $90K contract awarded to support Hurricane Flood Alert program

As part of Budget 2014: Shared Prosperity, Fair Society, Balanced Outlook, a contract has been awarded to AMEC as part of a $90,000 investment for the continuation of a three-year Hurricane Flood Alert program in 45 communities throughout the province.

“As climate change continues to affect our province, more communities are experiencing flooding and need flood risk warning systems to allow them to prepare and react quickly. By investing in monitoring and research, our government has taken action to provide those living in areas more prone to flooding the tools they need to respond to adverse precipitation events.”
- The Honourable Vaughn Granter, Minister of Environment and Conservation and Minister Responsible for the Office of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency

The Hurricane Flood Alert Service examines several weather and research forecast models daily to generate precipitation forecasts based on a set of site specific triggers. Alert information is provided to Fire and Emergency Services – Newfoundland and Labrador, which connects with identified communities to relay information and encourage monitoring and preparedness related to elevated water levels and possible flooding. This investment delivers on a commitment in Charting Our Course: Climate Change Action Plan 2011 in which government committed to enhance the province’s resilience to the impacts of climate change.

“Emergency planning and preparedness is a key component of public safety. Through the support of Fire and Emergency Services-NL, the Provincial Government has put significant resources in place to support municipalities in developing and exercising emergency management plans. With the increasing risks associated with extreme weather and climate change, the Hurricane Flood Alert Service will enhance public safety for communities and residents of Newfoundland and Labrador living in flood prone areas.”
- The Honourable Dan Crummell, Minister Responsible for Fire and Emergency Services-NL

AMEC will deliver the Hurricane Flood Alert program to 45 communities in partnership with the Department of Environment and Conservation.

The Hurricane Flood Relief Alert program will be made available to the following communities.

# Area/Community
1 Appleton/Glenwood
2 Battle Harbour
3 Bay Roberts (Shearstown)
4 Bishops Falls
5 Black Duck Siding
6 Burgeo
7 Carbonear
8 Channel-Port aux Basques
9 Churchill Falls
10 Clarenville (Shoal Harbour)
11 Cold Brook
12 Comfort Cove
13 Corner Brook
14 Daniel’s Harbour
15 Deer Lake
16 Gander
17 Glovertown
18 Great Codroy (Codroy Valley)
19 Hant’s Harbour
20 Happy Valley-Goose Bay
21 Heart’s Delight-Islington (Heart’s Delight)
22 Hickman’s Harbour-Robinson Bight (Hickman’s Harbour)
23 Hodges Cove
24 Kippens (Gaudon’s Brook)
25 La Scie
26 Logy Bay-Middle Cove-Outer Cove
27 Mary’s Harbour
28 Mount Pearl (Waterford River)
29 Nain
30 Petty Harbour
31 Portugal Cove-St. Philip’s
32 Salmon Cove
33 St. Alban’s
34 St. Anthony
35 St. John’s (Goulds and Waterford River)
36 St. Lawrence
37 Steady Brook
38 Stephenville
39 Stephenville Crossing
40 Trout River
41 Victoria
42 Wabush
43 Whitbourne
44 Winterton

Newfoundland and Labrador | Open fire ban with extreme fire risk

The Department of Natural Resources is implementing an outdoor fire ban for forest land in all regions on the Island of Newfoundland effective immediately.

Recent dry weather and hot temperatures experienced throughout the island have heightened the forest fire threat throughout all areas. The forest fire index is currently at extreme levels in many regions of the province. Under such conditions, the department is taking appropriate measures to prevent forest fires.

Outdoor fires are not permitted. Unauthorized burning, including campfires and brush burning, cannot take place in and around forested areas. Gas barbeques and CSA approved patio wood burning devices are excluded, except in municipalities that have issued a ban. All fireworks are included in the ban, except for sanctioned firework displays conducted by town and local communities with appropriate fire suppression resources on hand.

The outdoor fire ban will be lifted when weather and forest conditions warrant.