UPDATE: Windsor Receives Emergency Response Funding


Windsor is one of six municipalities getting a share of $2.5-million in provincial funding to upgrade emergency response. 

A total of $450,000 will go towards a specialized disaster response teams in the City of Windsor

That $450,000 is made up of $300,000 to support a new Urban Search and Rescue Team (USAR) and $150,000 to support an existing Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and Explosive Team (CBRNE).

Sylvia Jones, Ontario's Solicitor General, says the money will benefit the entire province:

"The funding will be used for some training, some equipment enhancement," says Jones. "It's really to make sure no matter where you live in the province of Ontario, there are teams that you can call on to assist when the local first responders need that additional support and specialized training."

Jones says the funding will support 10 specialized teams in North Bay, Ottawa, Peterborough, Thunder Bay, Toronto as well as Windsor.

"We want to make sure that no matter where you are in the province of Ontario and you are experiencing a disaster, it could be man made, it could be natural, we can very quickly call on one of these geographic areas and their committment is to get there within the first team, within two hours."

The exact amount of funding each community and team will receive has not been announced. 

The funding will enhance education and training for rescue teams that are called when people are trapped in a building that has collapsed, if there's an uncontrolled release of chemicals, nuclear contamination or explosions that could cause widespread damage. 

Jones tells AM800 News the centres with the specialized rescue skills, are called on all over the province.

"As you can imagine, very specialized training, in fact these teams last year were called out only seven times," notes Jones. "But for the communities, their friends, their neighbours who were assisted, (their work) is literally life saving."

The 10 teams are operated by their municipalities and support provincial efforts through an agreement with the Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management.