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Published: Friday, 20 April 2018 17:57
Written by Super User

On October 14th, 1890, the Wolfville Fire and Protection Company, consisting of horse and hand drawn equipment, began serving the Town of Wolfville and surrounding communities from the building on Central Avenue that now houses Dr.'s Winslade and Pothier offices. The meetings of the Department were held on the third floor of the C.H. Porter and Sons building. Early in the 20th century, the Company moved part of its operations to the Main Street building that is now the Kipawo Arts Centre. In this location was housed the Department's first motorized apparatus, a 1923 LaFrance Pumper, which is currently still in working order and privately owned. The Department's first ladder truck was a Stewart purchased in the mid-1940's and was used to carry ground ladders.

In 1945, the Department surrendered its incorporated status to become an agency of the Town of Wolfville and was reorganized as the Wolfville Volunteer Fire Department.

In the early 1950's the Department moved to the new Civic Complex and a three bay station housing four units was built on the station's current location. The Public Works building is now used by the RCMP. The existing fire station was demolished to be replaced by a new larger station to provide space for eight units, administration, recreation and training which opened in 1971.

The first aerial device was an open cab 65 foot 1941 LaFrance purchased in the early 1970's, formerly in service with the Halifax Naval Dockyard, and ultimately fd43.jpgsold to the Springhill Fire Department. It was replaced by a 1967 100 foot LaFrance aerial on an International chassis which was sold to the Lawrencetown Fire Department in 1990 when the Department purchased a 1977 LTI 85 foot platform aerial from a dealer in Pennsylvania. The unit originally saw service in Florida. The Department is one of the founding members of the Western Nova Scotia Mutual Aid system, one of the most actively used mutual aid systems in Canada. As a result of membership, the Department has responded to major alarms throughout Kings County and beyond, travelling as far as the former Cornwallis Naval Base to assist in fighting the Nova Tire Recycling Plant Fire in 1999.

The major fire at the internationally recognized Tattingstone Inn in Wolfville in the early 1990's which was contained such that the building could be restored and reopened, resulted in the owner hosting a reception for the members and families of Wolfville and responding mutual aid Departments. Retired Chief Gerald Wood, fire chief at the time of the fire, noted that this sort of recognition is rare and was greatly appreciated by the members.

The Department celebrated its 100th anniversary in 1990 and at that time was presented with a plaque of recognition by the serving President of the International Association of Fire Chiefs-the only presentation of its type to a volunteer department in the history of the Association.

In the 1990's the response patterns of the Department changed significantly and the need for specialty services was recognized. As a result, a Hazardous-Materials response team was established in conjunction with the New Minas and Kentville Fire Departments. Subsequently High Angle Rope Rescue was added.

The apparatus of the Department presently consists of:

Two 1500 GPM custom pumpers

A 1050 GPM, 2500 gallon tanker

An 100 foot ladder tower

A 1250 GPM rescue / pumper

Two light rescue / personnel carrier unit.

A 14 foot enclosed Haz-Mat trailer