Severe Flooding Affects Alberta IAFF Members
UPDATED June 23, 2013 – IAFF members across south central Alberta are at
work protecting the citizens of Calgary and other nearby communities while
worrying whether severe and dangerous flooding may affect their own homes and
IAFF and 6th District Vice President Lorne West are following the situation
closely. The Calgary Local 255 office has been set up for disaster relief
operations for IAFF members and all the affected locals in the area. Local 255
President Mark Faires and his team stand ready to provide assistance, including
IAFF Disaster Relief
financial aid where members are dislocated from their homes.
Calgary Local 255, which has 1,355 members, is the largest among those affected.
In all, there are approximately 1,700 IAFF members living and working in the
affected region. According to DVP West, the City is in tough shape and losses
will be very significant. The most immediate need is for donations to the
IAFF Disaster Relief Fund.
To make an online donation to the IAFF Disaster Relief Fund,
Or, make a $10 donation by texting
DISASTER to 50555 (only in the U.S)
Torrential rains have led to shocking flood levels in the Calgary area, where up
to 100,000 people have been evacuated. News images show rivers and creeks across
the region raging with dirty, fast-moving water and debris.
Water is creeping higher and higher on the empty streets of downtown Calgary,
and numerous surrounding communities are underwater. Affected by the flooding
are Calgary Local 255, Red Deer Local 1190, Canmore Local 4705, Airdrie Local
4778, Rocky View County Local 4794, Cochrane Local 4819 and Okotoks Local 4829.
There are 25 communities under evacuation order in Southern Alberta, and
Canadian Armed Forces have deployed 1,300 troops to assist. The Hockey arena has
water to the top of the lower bowl almost to the floors of the luxury suites,
and the zoo has been evacuated with the exotic animals moved to the County Jail.
“For the next few days, several of our members will have the difficult task of
trying to balance being on shift with the potential or the certainty of a crisis
at home due to the flooding in Calgary and surrounding communities,” says Faires.
The Local 255 Executive Board is asking members to come forward who are willing
to help other members affected by the flooding and the uncertainty it creates.
Disaster alerts in British Columbia have spread from the Kootenay Region (south
east) to Okanagan and Central Okanagan areas as a precautionary measure.
In addition, states of emergency have been declared in Medicine Hat (Local 263)
and Lethbridge (Local 237),
The IAFF will continue to provide updates as they become available.