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Noon-hour fire call shuts down street


Firefighters wearing gas masks and air tanks dealt with a smoke-filled basement situation, inside a house in a quiet resi- dential neighbourhood in Rockland, last Wednesday. The noon-hour fire call, onMarch 8, saw at least three Clarence-Rockland Fire De- partment trucks, plus an ambulance unit and an OPP patrol car on the scene. Paramedics stood by at the ready while fire fighters rolled out hoses, suited up with breathing gear, and also fired up a heavy-duty cutting saw. Deputy Chief Mario Villeneuve was command officer for the situation that day. During a later phone interview, he said that a neighbour called the fire department after seeing smoke issuing from the house. Fire fighters located the source of the smoke in the basement. Deputy Chief Vil- leneuve said they had the fire under control and extinguished “fairly rapidly”. Fire crews remained on the scene for about three hours in total, to both extinguish the fire and then vent the house of smoke. The fire was ruled “accidental” with no one injured.The homeowner was outside of the dwelling by the time the fire trucks arri- ved. Paramedics examined him for smoke- inhalation distress. OPP and Rockland bylaw enforcement officers worked together to cor- don off the street to any traffic while emer- gency personnel dealt with the situation.

Des pompiers portant des masques à gaz et des réservoirs d’air ont traité un sous-sol rempli de fumée, à l’intérieur d’une maison dans un quartier résidentiel tranquille de Rockland, mercredi dernier. Il n’y a eu aucune blessure et l’incendie a été jugé comme un accident. —photo Gregg Chamberlain

GREGG CHAMBERLAIN Planning begins for a new residence For now, Parisien noted, there is a plan- ning assistance fund of up $250,000 that the counties can apply for while it is continuing its research. He added that the UCPR still has to decide whether it would be better to build on the existing Residence site or see another location in either Prescott or Russell county, depending on the number of living units required, which is also subject to provincial approval. Both themayors and administration for the counties have lots of questions they want answered about the future of the Prescott- Russell Residence. But first they need to get the province to approve funds for future planning work. “The first thing we have to do is apply for this $250,000 (planning) funding,” said Sté- phane Parisien, chief administrator for the United Counties of Prescott-Russell (UCPR). Parisien gave counties council a verbal summary, during its March 8 session, of discussions, he and his staff had with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care “If you rebuild it, the (approval) process is very easy,” he explained. “If you build it elsewhere, the process is more complicated.” Parisien noted it could help the counties to consult with administration at Hawkes- bury &District General Hospital (HGH) for their expertise in facility planning, given the recent expansion for HGH. The Prescott-Rus-


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during the recent Ontario Good Roads Association (OGRA) conference.The focus of the discussion was the Residence, and what kind of help the UCPR can expect from the province to either upgrade the aging facility or build a new seniors’ retire- ment care home. “In the end, if we

sell Residence has served as a supported care retirement home for many senior resi- dents fromall parts of Prescott and Russell counties. The aging struc- ture has undergone renovations and up- grades over the years but may now have reached the point

Les maires et l’administration des Comtés unis veulent obtenir des réponses aux nombreuses questions concernant l’avenir de la Résidence Prescott-Russell. Mais il faut d’abord que la province approuve les fonds pour les futurs travaux de planification.

separate glass showers.


are approved by ministry, the UCPR fronts the whole cost of the construction,” Pari- sien said, adding that the counties could then apply, later, to the province for partial reimbursement. “These details need to be confirmed,” he mentioned .

where it does not meet all current provincial standards for senior and long-term retire- ment facilities. Counties staff have been reviewing op- tions for dealing with the Residence situa- tion, including further renovation to the existing structure to building a new facility.


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