The Regional District of North Okanagan is losing Vernon as a partner, but plans are to keep the burn building for other firefighters to train at. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star file photo)

North Okanagan city snuffs support of fire training centre

Other regional firefighters assured access to burn building

North Okanagan firefighters are being assured that access to important hands-on training won’t be lost.

The City of Vernon is pulling out of its lease involvement with fire training centre on Pottery Road. The facility is a burn building which firefighters from Vernon, Coldstream, Lumby, Spallumcheen, Enderby and the Regional District of North Okanagan practice in.

“While further discussions with all of the partners are required, as the facility owner, the RDNO would like to assure the public and North Okanagan fire departments, that we are looking into options to ensure the continued management of, and delivery of training at, this facility,” the RDNO said Tuesday, Nov. 10. “We recognize the importance of the hands-on training it provides to local firefighters.”

Vernon council is expected to adopt a withdrawal bylaw, which would remove the city’s contribution of $22,000 towards the lease of the building and land.

“Clearly it’s our position we can use our resources more effectively than we currently have been with the fire training centre,” Mayor Victor Cumming said at Monday’s council meeting.

The training centre has long been debated by area politicians.

READ MORE: Training debate blazes on

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The Regional District of North Okanagan is losing Vernon as a partner, but plans are to keep the burn building for other firefighters to train at. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star file photo)