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Coastal Fire Centre crews getting ready to leap into action

The weather is heating up and so is the risk of wildfires, so fire crews on Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast are gearing up for action.

Fire Information Officer Donna MacPherson with the Coastal Fire Centre says about 25 firefighters got their hover exit certification today at the Qualicum airport.The training enables them to leap from a helicopter so it isn’t forced to land when dropping off crews tackling wildfires.

MacPherson says they have initial attack crews stationed in Duncan, Parksville and Campbell River, and a crew of about 20 in Port Alberni.  There’s also a team based in Sechelt.

MacPherson says they’re expecting a fairly normal fire season this summer, but their forecasters are saying the fall could be warmer and drier than usual. And with the long weekend ahead, they’re reminding people to play it safe when it comes to outdoor fires.

Wildfires can be reported to the Coastal Fire Centre calling *5555 on a cellphone, or 1-800-663-5555 from a landline.

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