Fire Department

The Fort St. John Fire Department carries out fire inspection services, fire investigation, public safety and education, as well as municipal support for emergency and disaster preparedness.

At-a-glance:

  • Established in 1942
  • 30 members including day officers and suppression members
  • 1 station
  • 2 Fire Engines
  • 1 Aerial Ladder (100’ platform)
  • 1 heavy rescue vehicle
  • 1 water tender
  • 1 wildland unit
  • 1 hazmat trailer
  • 5 support vehicles

The Fort St John Fire department responses to an average of 800 incidents every year including:

  • Fire suppression
  • Medical response
  • Vehicle incidents
  • Hazardous material incidents
  • And other technical rescues such a high angle and confined space

History

After the tragic loss of two young children in a fire, residents of Fort St. John decided to start the first fire fighting brigade. Established in 1942, volunteers equipped a second-hand truck with buckets, spades, axes, and other rudimentary gear. The truck was stations at Bert Bowes and Bradin Herron’s garage on the main east-west road in town; volunteers dug a large hole on the northwest corner of the main crossroad and installed a water cistern. To alert the brigade, a post with a rope and bell was erected and when the bell rang, almost all businesses had a designated person to answer the call.

The Fort St. John fire division was completely manned by volunteers until 1964 when the City hired its first paid chief – Carl Lutz. In 1971, the City hired its first paid fire fighters and the fire department evolved into the team we know and trust today.