CAMPBELL RIVER, B.C. – Residents in Black Creek and Oyster River neighbourhoods without nearby fire hydrants can rest easy.

The Oyster River Fire Rescue is now accredited to provide alternative water supply through Superior Tanker Shuttle Service. This means Oyster River Fire Rescue can supply an excess of the minimum water that regular municipal fire hydrants provide.

The Fire Underwriters Survey provides the accreditation, and one of the requirements is that the water supply must be available 24 hours a day and 365 days a year.

To be accredited, the fire rescue had to undergo several tests to make sure it can supply water in the event of a fire without the aid of a fire hydrant. One of the tests included ensuring the water flow rate is at least 950 lpm (litre per minute) within five minutes of arriving at a residential fire, and delivering water with at least 1900 lpm for a commercial building fire.

“What this means is: residents that currently live in an apartment in the area but don’t live within 300 metres of a hydrant have a semi-protected insurance rate but with this in line, they can go to a full protection, which could save them a couple hundred dollars each year,” said Bruce Green, Oyster River Fire Rescue chief.

Melanie Davies, director of sales and marketing with Waypoint Insurance, said homeowners must contact their insurance broker or provider directly so they can get discounts on their policies. She said providers do not have a way of determining if an address has fire protection service unless homeowners let them know.