The town of Cookshire-Eaton held an inauguration and ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new fire station in Sawyerville on Wednesday morning. Constructed at a cost of $1.25 million, the new station represents a significant and long-awaited upgrade to fire protection services in the community, and will serve as a base of operations both for the Sawyerville area and for nearby Newport, Quebec.
“I am particularly happy and proud to see all the work that has been done,” said Cookshire-Eaton Mayor Mario Gendron. In addition to praising the quality of the new facilities, he also highlighted the cooperative nature of the local fire prevention services and described them as an example that other municipalities could benefit from following
Fire Chief Éric Cloutier took the time to explain the history of the project to replace the Sawyerville station, which dates back as far as 2011. At that time, he said, modern firefighting vehicles had outgrown the previous station, which was built in 1954.
“The trucks were much smaller at the time,” Cloutier said, explaining that a large number of municipalities faced the challenge of fitting larger trucks into smaller bays.
As a ‘temporary’ solution to the issue, the fire station was moved into the former municipal garage, where it remained for the next decade. Although the galvanized steel structure was large enough to house the firefighting equipment, it was far from comfortable for the firefighters let alone up to normal firefighting standards.