Structural Protection Units

Background

As an integral part of fulfilling the Filmon report recommendations on "Firestorm 2003," UBCM partners with the BC Wildfire Service (BCWS) and the Office of the Fire Commissioner (OFC) to provide a Structural Protection Program (SPP) and Structure Protection Units (SPUs).

UBCM owns the SPUs, which include Type 1 semi trailers and a Type 2 cargo trailer. These trailers are normally stored and maintained at the BCWS depot in Chilliwack and are moved around the province during fire season based on fire hazard ratings. Type 1 SPUs can provide protection for 30-50 structures, while a Type 2 SPU can provide protection 20-30 structures.

As these are trailer units, they are easily moved anywhere in the province within 12 hours of dispatch.

The OFC manages the SPP and resources including Structure Protection Specialist (SPS), SPU and Structure Protection Crews, training and public education. 

Purpose

SPUs and crews are deployed during interface fires where structures or infrastructures may be at risk. Each property that is threatened is triaged and appropriate measures are undertaken. The SPUs contain equipment to create a humidity bubble and to wet roofs and areas surrounding structures in order to mitigate the damage from sparks and approaching wildfire.  

Deployment

In the event of a Wildland-Urban Interface event SPUs are deployed by the OFC, with at least one SPS and a five-person crew, upon receiving a resource request from local government or the BCWS. The reimbursement rates for the crews and SPUs are provided by EMBC for fires within a fire protection district and BCWS for areas outside of a fire protection district.

A summary of deployments is available.

Contact Information

For more information about SPU deployment, training or public education, please contact the Office of the Fire Commissioner.

For more information about UBCM’s role in the SPU program, contact Local Government Program Services at (250) 356-5193 or lgps@ubcm.ca.

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