Rick Geddes, deputy chief at the Sproat Lake Volunteer Fire Dept., receives his Special Recognition Award at the 2018 Community Excellence Awards in Port Alberni. SUSAN QUINN PHOTO

Ucluelet hires first full-time fire chief

Rick Geddes is well-known as Sproat Lake Volunteer Fire Dept. deputy chief

UCLUELET, BC– The District of Ucluelet has hired its first full-time fire chief, and he’s coming from just up Highway 4 in the Alberni Valley.

Chief Rick Geddes has served as the deputy chief for the Sproat Lake Fire Department and Acting Unit Chief for the BC Ambulance Service. Geddes’ new role will be to lead the district’s fire and protective services department and will include oversight of Ucluelet’s emergency management program.

The Ucluelet Volunteer Fire Brigade consists of 23 fully trained firefighters and provides essential fire and first responder protection service for our growing community.

“I am both honoured and excited to become the first full-time fire chief for the District of Ucluelet,” said Geddes. “I look forward to developing upon the high level of fire protection and emergency preparedness that has been established within the community.”

READ: Alberni firefighters assist in fire ravaged Interior, gain valuable skills

“We look forward to the new addition to the fire department but also to our administration for the district,” said Ucluelet mayor Mayco Noël.

“Going forward we have many opportunities on the horizon for our community and being prepared is the motivation behind the hire.”

Geddes will begin his new role with the District of Ucluelet on May 13.

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The hiring of a full-time fire chief is a significant step in the progression of services provided by the District of Ucluelet. The new role will increase planning and implementation of fire protection, fire inspection, and emergency preparedness services. The department will also look to renew fire services agreements with the Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District and ensure the implementation of new agreements including the recently approved agreement to provide fire protection service to the YuułuʔiłʔatḥGovernment – Ucluelet First Nation community of Hitac̓u.

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susie.quinn@albernivalleynews.com

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Sproat Lake Volunteer Fire Department deputy chief Rick Geddes carries fallen firefighter Carla Kulczycki’s helmet in front of the department’s ladder truck during a line of duty honour guard, Sunday afternoon on Roger Street. SUSAN QUINN PHOTO

Melinda and Rick Geddes stand with Melinda’s Vital Link Award at the BC Ambulance Station in Port Alberni on April 4, 2017. Melinda wasn’t expecting to receive an award that day—she thought it was for her partner, Rick, who is a paramedic. ELENA RARDON PHOTO

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