A new fire chief is ready to man the helm of the Lethbridge Fire and Emergency Services. Greg Adair was announced as the new fire chief on Thursday morning. Adair moved to Lethbridge to work for the Lethbridge Fire and Emergency Services in 2017 after working for 20 years in Red Deer as both a firefighter and paramedic. Adair says he is excited for the new role, but also says he will face a number of challenges like staffing issues during our current opioid crisis.
“How do we continue to staff with our increased call volumes that we see? We know that the opioid crisis is a continual crisis that’s been going on for three to five years. Those call volumes just keep going up. How do we effectively respond to all of those emergencies that continue to increase? It will be a challenge to address that. But it’s also an exciting opportunity to look at how we will be able to respond better in the future.”
Adair says he will work on securing a long-term ambulance contract with Alberta Health Services, and he will continue to advocate for EMS dispatch services to be provided by the local Public Safety Communications Centre.
Mental and physical health of employees is another important priority for Adair. As well as providing resources to make sure professional service levels can be maintained.
Adair will start in his new position on January 12th, which will allow for a transition period between him and retiring Fire Chief Marc Rathwell. Rathwell’s final day is on February 11th.