Paul Collard President of the Vanderhoof Flying Club and Vanderhoof Airport Development Society chatting with the firefighters enjoying their breakfast. Photo Fiona Maureen

Airport Flying Club breakfast for helicopter crew

On Saturday July 22, the Vanderhoof Flying Club hosted a breakfast for the Mayor, Regional district and Helicopter crews operating from the Vanderhoof Airport.

At the Flying Clubhouse Saturday morning July 22, the Vanderhoof Flying Club and Airport Development Society hosted a breakfast for helicopter crews operating from the Vanderhoof Airport. Pilots, engineers and some firefighters stopped into the aging little terminal building, a World War II radio shack, to enjoy some coffee, fried eggs, pancakes and buffalo sausage before heading out into the field for their shifts to fight local wildfires. District of Vanderhoof Mayor, Gerry Thiessen and Jerry Petersen, Vanderhoof Rural Area F Director, elected representative of Regional District of Bulkley Nechako, were both there to extend a message of appreciation from residents in the area.


Breakfast chefs Paul Collard and Judy Blattner. Photo Fiona Maureen

Engineer doing pre-trip inspection of the Sequoia. The Pilot of this helicopter is an Evacuee from Williams Lake. His family are staying with relatives in the lower Mainland. Photo Fiona Maureen

Paul Collard, Jerry Petersen, Engineer Keith Flemming, Jim Mitchell, Pilot Erwin Carr, Engineer Sam Lafferma, Mayor Gerry Thiessen.

Initial Attack Firefighters with family in Vanderhoof; Julia Steinebach, Caleb Wiebe, Hilary Desmerais, Dickson Louwen pase with Helicopter Pilot Scott Kinnee. Scott works for Buffalo Aerial Services out of Chetwynd. He is flying this crew to their drop-off spot at 5 km W of Tatelkuz Lake, a 1,340 hectare lightening caused fire south of Vanderhoof 118 km on the Kluskus FSR. Flying them in saves crews close to two hours drive time. The status of this Tatelkuz Lake interface fire is ‘Being Held’. This means that given the current resources assigned to this fire and the suppression action taken, the fire is not likely to spread beyond existing or predetermined boundaries under the current and forecasted conditions. No significant growth is being reported at this fire but an Evacuation Alert is in effect for a small area around it. Ground crews are working to reinforce the guard completed by heavy equipment. This crew of four are one of twenty firefighters allocated to work on this fire. Objectives for crews over the weekend was mop-up of hot spots and continuing patrols. Photos by Fiona Maureen

Initial Attack Firefighter Hilary Desmerais, about to load the helicopter with crew equipment.