Amherstburg Fire Department

Former Windsor fire chief looking forward to starting in Amherstburg

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Bruce Montone may have retired as fire chief in Windsor but he has no plans on leaving firefighting.

Montone was officially named as the new fire chief in Amherstburg and will start his new duties April 24. Current fire chief Al Reaume will resume his retirement at that point.

“You can’t believe how much I’m looking forward to it,” Montone told the RTT prior to Monday night’s council meeting.

Montone’s contract with Windsor expired at the end of March but he decided he didn’t want to leave firefighting altogether.

“I decided that retirement won’t fit me very well, at least not yet,” he said.

Montone said he has seen the work Reaume has done in Amherstburg since coming on in 2015 and the “significant changes” the Amherstburg Fire Department has embarked upon and that made his decision to come to Amherstburg somewhat easier.

After talking to Reaume, he spoke with CAO John Miceli about the position and talks progressed to where Montone agreed to take the chief’s job in Amherstburg.

Bruce Montone, who retired as Windsor fire chief March 31, is the new Amherstburg fire chief. He assumes his new duties April 24.

Bruce Montone, who retired as Windsor fire chief March 31, is the new Amherstburg fire chief. He assumes his new duties April 24.

“It was not a difficult discussion (with Miceli), let’s put it that way,” said Montone.

Montone had a five-year contract with Windsor but said he agreed to extended it to have a transition put in place. Now that the transition in Windsor has come to fruition, he said he is coming to Amherstburg to continue the work Reaume started and to “continue to move the department in the direction he set.”

One of the major priorities for Montone will be the creation of a new master fire plan for Amherstburg.

“Obviously, we are going to need significant input,” said Montone, noting the input has to come from the firefighters and the public at large. “It’s very, very important to listen to what the community expects of their fire service. We want to hear what the public thinks and expects for the next five to ten years.”

That plan will also see the input of the province and town council, he added.

The incoming chief has nearly 41 years of experience including stops in municipalities similar in size to Amherstburg. He has been a volunteer firefighter, a career firefighter, a fire prevention officer and fire chief in northern Ontario. Montone worked with the Ontario Fire Marshal’s office from 1987-2002 and was also a deputy fire chief in Ottawa where he was responsible for the communications division, special operations division, comprised of Haz-Mat/CBRNE, all rescue activities including water and ice, auto-extrication, high angle, confined space, trench and USAR Operations. His biography includes stating that the Divisions of Fire Prevention, Training, Safety, and Maintenance were also part of his portfolio.

“My impression of the town of Amherstburg is that there is a huge amount of community pride and commitment by its residents. People in Amherstburg are very proud of what they have,” he said, adding he believes his career has come full circle.

Miceli also outlined Montone’s qualifications, including an Ontario Public Safety Award and the Fire Chief of the Year Award, the latter being from the Ontario Association of Fire Chiefs. Both of those awards came in 2016.

Mayor Aldo DiCarlo said Reaume expressed a desire to go back into retirement and Miceli was aware of Montone’s contract expiring in Windsor. He noted that the timing was perfect as it is also time for the new master fire plan and Montone could start on it from the beginning rather than taking over mid-stream.

DiCarlo said Montone has a “very healthy CV” and believes Amherstburg is very well situated with both Montone and deputy chief Lee Tome at the helm.

Fire chief Al Reaume (left) receives a plaque from Mayor Aldo DiCarlo during Monday night’s town council meeting. Reaume was recognized for his two years of service to the town. He retires April 24.

Fire chief Al Reaume (left) receives a plaque from Mayor Aldo DiCarlo during Monday night’s town council meeting. Reaume was recognized for his two years of service to the town. He retires April 24.

“(Montone) has got a pretty decorated past as far as firefighting goes,” said DiCarlo.

DiCarlo added that Montone has retired from Windsor, not from firefighting and that by the time Montone is ready to leave Amherstburg, the town’s fire department will be in a better position in terms of succession planning from within.

Reaume’s last official function for the department will be the awards banquet April 22 and Montone will take over as chief officially two days later.

As for his retirement, “I’m going back to do what I was doing when I got the call (about coming to Amherstburg) – I’m going back to playing golf.”

Reaume only planned to stay for one year but with provincial orders not complete at that time, he stayed for another year to ensure those orders were dealt with.

“It’s been extremely positive,” he said of his time in Amherstburg. “The firefighters here are phenomenal. They’ll give you 100 per cent. They are doing the job for the right reasons.”

Reaume told council that “we’ve come a long way” since he took over in 2015, noting it was “a rocky start.”

The 45-year firefighting veteran also said the “timing is just right” to retire again, noting Montone can start fresh with the master fire plan. When he was approached about his thoughts about the town hiring Montone, he said the latter was “the perfect replacement for me.”

Recently retired Windsor chief to head Amherstburg Fire Department

 

The town of Amherstburg has reached back into Windsor for its next fire chief.

With Chief Al Reaume scheduled to resume his retirement in the coming weeks, the town announced via supplementary council agenda that Bruce Montone will be his replacement. The bylaw to appoint Montone as the town’s next fire chief is on the supplementary agenda for Monday night’s meeting.

Montone officially retired as the fire chief in the City of Windsor March 31. According to his biography on the city’s website, Montone “has been actively employed in the Fire Service for 38 years.”

The biography states that Montone has served as a volunteer firefighter, as a career firefighter and officer and later as Chief Fire Prevention Officer and as Fire Chief in Northern Ontario.

“Chief Montone served with the Ontario Office of the Fire Marshal from 1987 to 2002 serving in the field as a Fire Services Advisor and later, Manager of the Northern Fire Protection Program and also as Operations Manager for all of Southern Ontario,” the biography states.

fire logo

Montone was appointed deputy fire chief in Ottawa. He was responsible for the communications division, special operations division, comprised of Haz-Mat/CBRNE, all rescue activities including water and ice, auto-extrication, high angle, confined space, trench and USAR Operations. The Divisions of Fire Prevention, Training, Safety, and Maintenance completed his portfolio, the biography states. His portfolios included community standards, education, planning & innovation.

“Chief Montone is a Past Chairman of Government Relations for the Canadian Association of Fire Chief’s. He is also past Chairman of the Transportation Emergency Rescue Committee (TERC) of Canada. The Chief is a PESC certified Program Evaluator,” his biography reads. “He has a long active history with emergency services in a variety of areas including, Standards of Cover, Risk Assessment, Deployment, officer development, employee wellness, performance improvement, program evaluation and team building.”

Montone is expected to be introduced at next Monday’s council meeting. Reaume is also scheduled to receive recognition from the town.

Amherstburg firefighters douse chimney fire

The Amherstburg Fire Department responded to a chimney fire on Fort St. last Thursday afternoon.

According to the fire department, they were able to extinguish the fire, which was contained to the interior of the chimney.

FortSt FireWEB

The residents were able to return to the home later in the afternoon.

Maintain smoke and CO alarms along with changing clocks this weekend

 

Clocks go forward one hour this weekend and it is also the time to change batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms.

Daylight savings begins during the early morning hours this Sunday, and the Amherstburg Fire Department is recommending residents install new batteries in their smoke alarms and carbon monoxide (CO) alarms when they change their clocks.

“In order for smoke and carbon monoxide alarms to do their job, they need to have

working batteries,” explains fire chief Al Reaume. “Once a year, old batteries should be replaced with new batteries. When you change your clocks this weekend, Amherstburg Fire Department wants everyone to take the time to install new batteries in all smoke alarms and CO alarms.”

The Amherstburg Fire Department also recommends that people check the age of their smoke and CO alarms. The fire department recommends replacing all smoke and CO alarms when they are 10 years old or sooner, as recommended by the manufacturer.

fire logo

In order to survive a fire, the Amherstburg Fire Department states that people need to be provided with an early warning and know what to do when the smoke alarms sound. It’s the law to have working smoke alarms on every storey of the home and outside all sleeping areas.

For added protection, it is also recommended to install smoke alarms inside all bedrooms.

Carbon monoxide alarms are now required by law. As well, if a home has a fuel

burning appliance or attached garage, CO alarms are to be installed outside every

sleeping area.

Tampering with or removing the batteries from your smoke alarm is against the law, the Amherstburg Fire Department adds.

Failure to comply with the Fire Code smoke alarm requirements can result in a ticket of $360 or a fine of up to $50,000.

Burns suffered after “issue” with pizza oven

 

A male suffered burns after an “issue” with a pizza oven Monday evening at a local pizza restaurant.

fire logo

The Amherstburg Fire Department reports that the Ontario Fire Marshal’s office and the Technical Standards and Safety Authority (TSSA) were called in to conduct an investigation Tuesday as a result of the matter which saw the male transported to hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

The Amherstburg Fire Department reported around 5:45 p.m. Monday that they were on the scene at Capri Pizza where a male suffered “minor burns” to his face, shoulder and arm. The injuries were suffered were due to an “issue” with a pizza oven.