The Estevan Fire Department has had a busy last couple of weeks, and not just in the form of emergencies.

"In conjunction with the Tower resterraunt, we were following delivery drivers on the Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday of Fire Prevention Week. We would come to the door and see if the homeowners would allow us to make entry. We would check to make sure the smoke alarms were working, and if everything was all functional and safe in the home then they were eligible for a free pizza," explained Fire Chief Dale Feser.

"If they weren't, then we would replace the smoke alarm free of charge, if it wasnt' functioning or over 10 years of age. If the battery was dead and needing replacement, we did that free of charge as well. If there was no smoke alarms at all in the home, we would install them."

He noted that this years' campaign wasn't as successful as last year.

"I don't know if it's an indicator of of the downturn in the economy, but it was a much needed campaign to get out there, going door to door and making sure that everybody does have a working smoke alarm in their home."

That said, there were a few emergency calls that required their service.

A gas flaring operation just north of Estevan had some concerned residents calling in.

 "We had residential fire alarm calls and carbon monoxide calls. We also had to investigate some reported fires, where Transgas was doing some flaring   operations. Of course, once the sun dropped it was more prominent on the horizon. We responded to some motor vehicle collisions during the week as well.   Thank goodness they were just minor low speed collisions with no injuries or entrapment."

 "On Friday afternoon we did respond to a wildland fire southwest of the city. That was easily contained, brought under control and extinguished without   incident," Feser shared.

 "On Saturday we were tied up with the Estevan Legion on parade duty. We were setting up barracades for their parade and then had an honor guard set up   for as soon as they made it to the cenotaph for the ceremony. We're very pleased to have taken part in that particular day and it's events."

 Then the wind came, and although it didn't cause the same damage in Estevan as it did in other locations in Saskatchewan, Feser did note one point where   his crews had their hands full.

 "We did have to respond to a fire on Tuesday night, a fairly lengthy one, to the southwest of the city again. After a few hours we were able to bring that under control and effectively extinguish it without incident or injuries."

On this occasion, first glance indicated that it was caused by a controlled burn that got out of hand. However, Feser said that further investigation proved otherwise.

"All the landowners out there said that there were no controlled burns. It was right along a roadway easement, so this could very well have been a case of careless discarding of tobacco materials, a cigarette butt thrown out the window."

He added that, with hunting season underway, it's important to watch where your hot gun shells are landing.

They have also noticed that there are those who still attempt to burn off their vegetation, despite strong wind conditions. Feser stressed that the activity should not be conducted with wind speeds greater than 25-30 kilometers an hour.

"Please make sure that, if you are conducting a controlled burn, to call into the provincial burn line."

Overall during the windy period, no specifically related incidents required the Fire Department's attention.


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