Fire fighters confirm that Canada Unprepared to Defend Itself

A damning report released March 31 by the Senate

Committee on National Security and Defence confirms what the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) has been telling the federal government for years: that Canada is woefully unprepared to defend itself against the aftermath of a terrorist attack or other major disaster. And until fire fighters and other first responders receive the specialized training they need to respond to chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear (CBRN) incidents or other major disasters, the majority of Canadians will remain at risk, says Jim Lee, the IAFF’s Assistant to the General President for Canadian Operations. “In the event of a major disaster such as a terrorist attack, fire fighters will be on the scene in minutes. Fire fighters are Canada’s first line of defense against the aftermath of an attack. But if fire fighters aren’t properly trained, they can’t provide that protection during the critical first hours of emergency response. And that means that citizens are not protected.” Military-based teams may be hours, if not days from arriving on the scene of an attack in a Canadian city. Lee notes that even military leaders acknowledge the military will not be first on scene. Full Story

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