Following a donation from TC Energy, new life-saving equipment will soon be in the hands of RDEK firefighters.

Elk Valley and South Country Rural Fire and Rescue Service will soon have a new Jaws of Life apparatus, after support from a TC Energy grant.

“In small, rural communities having access to life-saving equipment is critical, but raising funds can be challenging due to our sparse population. Receiving this grant allows us to upgrade our equipment and add a vital tool to our arsenal,” said Dave Boreen, Elk Valley and South Country Rural Fire and Rescue Service Chief.

$10,500 was provided through TC Energy’s Build Strong Program in order to purchase the new Jaws of Life device for the firefighters. Placed on order, the RDEK says the apparatus should arrive by the end of the month.

Jaws of Life is a tool used by emergency responders to quickly cut open vehicles involved in collisions where a victim may be trapped.

“The Jaws of Life will provide our firefighters with a safer, more efficient tool to provide rescue services to those in need when every second counts,” added Boreen.

According to the RDEK, the device will effectively replace the fire department’s current Combi-Tool, which is nine years past the industry’s best practices. The tool is also reportedly damaged and in need of significant repair.