ACS helps out Amherstburg Fire Department with donation of bus

 

Amherstburg Community Services executive director Kathy DiBartolomeo (left) hands the keys to the agency’s old Care-A-Van bus to Deputy Fire Chief Jim Ouellette. With a new Care-A-Van bus on the way, ACS donated its old bus so that the fire department could use it for training purposes.

Amherstburg Community Services executive director Kathy DiBartolomeo (left) hands the keys to the agency’s old Care-A-Van bus to Deputy Fire Chief Jim Ouellette. With a new Care-A-Van bus on the way, ACS donated its old bus so that the fire department could use it for training purposes.

By Ron Giofu

 

The Amherstburg Fire Department will get to practise their extrication skills on a mini-bus thanks to Amherstburg Community Services (ACS).

ACS donated its former Care-A-Van to the fire department, with ACS executive director Kathy DiBartolomeo officially presenting the keys to Deputy Fire Chief Jim Ouellette last Monday afternoon.

“It’s our 2003 bus,” said DiBartolomeo. “It has served us well for ten years.”

DiBartolomeo said the Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) has approved funding for a new 18-seat bus to replace the 12-seat bus being donated to the fire department. That new bus will allow ACS to offer more trips to Windsor and to drive people to additional social outings, though the organization still has one bus and one van operational. The cost of the new bus is estimated at $80,000.

ACS also hopes to purchase a new sprinter van to assist people in getting around, including those with disabilities.

Ouellette said the old bus will be used to help firefighters sharpen their skills. He envisioned using the old bus as part of a mock accident exercise that would involve Amherstburg firefighters and Essex-Windsor EMS teaming with high school students. Firefighters from all three stations would partake in such an exercise, he added.

“That’s the kind of exercise we want to do,” said Ouellette.

The Amherstburg Fire Department normally uses cars, he stated, so the donation of the small bus comes as a welcome addition. He said the fire department doesn’t usually have a vehicle of that sort to practise their extrication skills on.

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