© Guardian photo by Brian McInnis
A member of the P.E.I Ground Search and Rescue team checks his map co-ordinates Saturday.
The P.E.I. Ground Search and Rescue organization will improve efficiencies within its operations and create a central location with funds announced today from the federal and provincial governments.
P.E.I. Senator Mike Duffy, provincial Rural Development Minister Ron MacKinley and Doug Newson, CEO of the Charlottetown Airport Authority, made the announcement this afternoon, detailing upgrades to a facility located at the Charlottetown Airport Authority Business Park.
“Modern facilities and sustainable infrastructure contribute to the quality of life in small communities and large urban centres across Canada,” said Duffy. “The Charlottetown Airport Authority has taken a leadership role in a project that will see key upgrades to a centralized facility utilized by the PEI Ground Search and Rescue organization.”
The Government of Canada’s investment of $38,375 will allow the Charlottetown Airport Authority to perform upgrades to one of the leased buildings on its property which houses the P.E.I. Ground Search and Rescue (PEIGSAR). The Government of Prince Edward Island will invest $30,500 under the Island Community Fund. The Charlottetown Airport Authority will contribute $7,875.
"With the growing demand for Prince Edward Island's Ground Search and Rescue Services, the provincial government is pleased to invest in infrastructure improvements for the volunteers who provide this critical service," said MacKinley. "Supporting this important organization will strengthen its ability to provide essential emergency services across Prince Edward Island."
The PEIGSAR is a non-profit, volunteer-driven group with active members from across PEI. The organization has a mandate to search for and rescue individuals who are lost or injured, and also includes offering assistance when required to the Canadian Coast Guard, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police or other organizations. PEIGSAR once stored its equipment at multiple locations, making management and transport difficult. Upgrades to the facility include the installation of large bay doors, a new training room, bathrooms, a kitchenette, new roofing, insulation, new lighting, and a heating system.
“We are very pleased to work with our partners at the PEI Ground Search and Rescue on this project to improve its efficiencies in a central location”, said Newson. “This volunteer-driven group does very important work in our province and on behalf of them and the Airport Authority, I want to thank both the Federal and Provincial governments for supporting this project.”