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PM Trudeau thanks Nova Scotia firefighters and first responders for battling wildfires

By Evan Taylor Jun 19, 2023 | 3:09 PM

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau expressed his gratitude to firefighters and first responders during his visit to Nova Scotia on Monday, acknowledging their crucial role in battling the devastating wildfires that swept through the province earlier this spring.

Trudeau visited the fire hall on Hammonds Plains Rd., where he spent time with firefighters, engaging in conversations, taking photographs, and offering his appreciation. Addressing the assembled firefighters, Trudeau expressed his heartfelt gratitude for their exceptional efforts in the face of challenging circumstances, emphasizing their unwavering support for the community.

Recognizing the perilous situations firefighters regularly encounter, Trudeau emphasized the nation’s deep reliance on their dedicated service. He reassured them that their commitment did not go unnoticed, stating, “I want you to know how much everyone appreciates it.”

Later in the day, Trudeau attended a first responder appreciation event at the St. Margaret’s Centre in Upper Tantallon. The event celebrated the collective efforts of various responders, including Ground Search and Rescue personnel and officials from the Department of Natural Resources and Renewables.

Trudeau acknowledged the demanding circumstances of recent years, marked by escalating extreme weather events due to climate change and the ongoing impacts of the pandemic. He commended the first responders for consistently stepping up and emphasized the rarity of opportunities to express gratitude for their continuous dedication. Speaking on behalf of all Canadians, Trudeau reiterated his profound appreciation for their commitment to assisting individuals and communities during times of difficulty.

The wildfires that ravaged the Tantallon area in late May led to the evacuation of over 16,000 individuals and the destruction of approximately 150 homes. Fortunately, the majority of evacuees have been able to return to their homes since then.

In Shelburne County, another fire, the largest in provincial history, engulfed more than 235 square kilometers of land. This destructive blaze necessitated the evacuation of over 6,000 individuals and resulted in the loss of approximately 60 homes and cottages. Thankfully, the fire was finally brought under control last week.

Experts have issued warnings regarding the possibility of a record-breaking amount of land being consumed by wildfires this year, characterizing the current wildfire season as “unprecedented.” Recognizing the severity of the situation, the federal government has provided assistance to multiple provinces, including Nova Scotia, Alberta, and Quebec.

Despite the serious projections, Prime Minister Trudeau assured Canadians earlier this month that the country possesses adequate resources to manage the wildfire situation throughout the summer months.


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