Back on May 28th of this year Mr. Eldon Bienert, the President of the Equine Federation of Canada, came before Leduc County Council to present a cheque for $20,000.00 in order to purchase a livestock trailer equipped for emergencies throughout the County that involved animals. On September 4th County emergency services personnel were excited to finally take possession of the long awaited trailer.
“The Leduc County region is a major hub for livestock and transportation and an increase in transportation events involving livestock make this donation extremely valuable to us,” says Darrell Fleming, Fire Chief. “These events require specialized training and equipment, which places enormous demands on our first responders. This unit will further assist our men and women in providing high-quality service.”
The Alberta Farm Animal Care Assoc. identified the New Sarepta region as an ideal location to have a provider for livestock emergency services due to the area's agricultural expertise and close proximity to a major transportation corridor.
Normally the AFACA would provide the area with a livestock rescue unit but at this time it was unable to do so for Leduc County. This is when the Equine Federation of Canada stepped in to help fill the gap. The 18 foot long trailer is equipped with livestock panels, ropes, a generator, a metal saw and other tools which may aid in the rescue of livestock involved in an emergency.
The need for a unit such as this was driven home to Mr. Bienert when he witnessed a horse that had fallen through the ice one winter and the rescuers did not even have a rope with which to help the animal.
Deputy Fire Chief for the County, Mr. Brad Gurmin agreed that this was a much needed piece of equipment for Leduc County emergency crews as during his relatively short time with the force there have been four incidents that he could remember occurring where a livestock trailer had been needed during an emergency.
Leduc County expects to train 12 firefighters this fall for livestock handling and the operation of this specialized equipment.