As part of National Volunteer Week, the Government of British Columbia has recognized six Public Safety Lifeline volunteers for their contributions to emergency and disaster response throughout the province.
Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General Mike Farnworth presented the awards to the winners at the annual Public Safety Lifeline Volunteer ceremony at the Parliament Buildings. Emergency Management BC staff joined Farnworth, to celebrate the achievements of each volunteer and their contribution to their communities.
“Public Safety Lifeline volunteers are at the heart of emergency response in our province. These selfless volunteers dedicate their time and energy to helping people who are struggling through extremely challenging situations,” said Farnworth. “These award winners have gone above and beyond to help strengthen our communities and make B.C. safer. On behalf of the Government of British Columbia, congratulations and thank you.”
These award winners are a select few among thousands of Public Safety Lifeline volunteers, who conduct air and ground searches, help victims of serious motor vehicle accidents, set up networks of volunteer teams and co-ordinate services for victims of natural disasters.
This year’s award winners include:
- Emergency Social Services – Carolynne Miller
- Road Rescue – Brian Brinkhurst
- Search and Rescue – Dave Merritt
- Pep Air – Bibiane Tarasuik
- Radio Communications – Larry Joe
- Lifetime Achievement Award – Andrew Spray, search and rescue volunteer
More than 13,000 Public Safety Lifeline volunteers in British Columbia respond to an average of 6,000 incidents a year.
Public safety lifeline volunteers demonstrate a selfless commitment to the safety of B.C. families and communities during emergencies.
- There are approximately 2,500 registered search and rescue volunteers throughout British Columbia, who respond to 1,400 incidents annually. In 95% of cases, subjects are found or rescued within the first 24 hours.
- Road Rescue volunteers attend more than 2,000 motor vehicle accidents annually throughout the province. Under the road rescue organization, teams provide vehicle extrication, rope rescue and other specialized rescue services to help protect B.C.’s travelling public.
- PEP Air's primary function is to assist Canadian Forces during search and rescue missions when additional resources are required. Currently, the organization includes over 100 aircraft, crewed by more than 900 pilots, spotters and navigators.
- Emergency Social Services provides short-term assistance to British Columbians who are forced to leave their homes because of fire, floods or other emergencies. This assistance includes food, lodging, clothing, emotional support and family reunification.
- Emergency Radio Communications respond when all other systems of communications fail. A proven and reliable means of communications, emergency or “ham” radio is a public safety lifeline that helps coordinate crisis relief.
- April 15-21, 2018, is National Volunteer Week, a time to recognize volunteers, and celebrate the power of volunteerism in communities, throughout British Columbia and across Canada.
- To learn more about Public Safety Lifeline volunteers and their work in your community, or how to get involved, visit: http://ow.ly/4mKqFW
- Public Safety Lifeline Volunteer award winners bios: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/safety/emergency-preparedness-response-recovery/volunteers/pslv-award-winners-2018