By fire chief William Pernett
North Whatcom Fire and Rescue (NWFR) proudly serves the communities of Blaine, Birch Bay and unincorporated areas of Whatcom County.
NWFR responded to 3,855 calls throughout November 2016. Almost 63 percent of those calls were for emergency medical assistance; 4 percent of the calls were for fires. The remaining 33 percent of calls were for false alarms, public assists and hazardous conditions.
NWFR currently has over 100 members including administrative staff, mechanics and career and volunteer firefighters. Bruce Ansell was appointed fire commissioner in March 2017 to fill a vacancy and then elected for a six-year term beginning in January. Rich Bosman and Larry McPhail were reelected to their commissioner positions in the November 7 general election.This year, Joe Noonchester was promoted to assistant chief of operations, Kris Jorgensen was promoted to training captain and Stefen Paige was promoted to lieutenant. Three career firefighters were hired in August.
The district installed new emergency phones at each of the fire stations that provide quick access to 911 systems by simply picking up the receiver. Phones will detect the caller’s location by forwarding the caller to 911 if the crews are out assisting others in the community.
NWFR participated in multiple community events and fundraisers including Blaine’s Old Fashioned Fourth of July as well as the Pumpkin Party, Tree of Wishes, Project Santa. NWFR also assisted with the Community Assistance Program’s Thanksgiving basket giveaway and weekly community dinners.
NWFR participated in the 9/11 Memorial Ride and Service to honor those who lost their lives in the horrific attacks in 2001. NWFR was instrumental in spear heading the event on the U.S. side.
NWFR continues a successful consolidation with District 4.
NWFR would like to thank the community for their continued support of fire and medical emergency services and give special recognition to the dedicated volunteers that serve throughout the district. The district is grateful for your continued commitment and service.