1.375 Hazmat - Hazardous Materials Incident Response

The Hazmat response service provides a system for the timely response to hazardous material emergency incidents in the capital region. The CRD initially partnered with the City of Surrey where Surrey provided Hazmat response for 5 years and simultaneously trained firefighters in the CRD. There are now over 60 trained firefighters from departments throughout the region and the CRD provides a central store of specialized equipment, housed and maintained by the Central Saanich Fire Department.

If a hazmat spill occurs, the local fire department will send a crew to identify and assess the situation and secure the area. After consulting with the responsible party, or the Ministry of Environment, the local department can draw on regional resources, including equipment and technicians to mitigate the situation. The responsibility for the clean up rests with the responsible party (the spiller).

Authority

In 2004, responding to increasing Hazmat incidents in the CRD and a lack of on island resources, the CRD Board, in conjunction with the Greater Victoria Fire Chiefs Association undertook a feasibility study to look at options for Hazmat response within the CRD. In 2006 the board received consent from the CRD municipal councils and the electoral area directors to establish a service of preparation for a hazardous materials emergency, and providing for a system of response to hazardous material emergency incidents in the CRD. In October 2006, the CRD Board adopted Bylaw No 3322 Capital Regional District Hazardous Materials Incident Response Service Establishment Bylaw No 1, 2006. The service continues to be authorized and administered under CRD Bylaw No 3322.

Administration

This service is managed and operated by the CRD Planning, Transportation and Protective Services Department. They work in cooperation with the Greater Victoria Fire Chief’s Association (GVFCA) Policy Group and Operational Working Group (Team members, GVFCA and CRD) to provide operational support and administration of the regional Emergency Hazardous Material Response team in partnership with the fire departments in the Region.

Funding

The budget for this service is established through an annual CRD Financial Planning process, and is funded by an annual regional property value tax.