The Cranbrook Search and Rescue Society – Highway Rescue is the recipient of a $10,000 grant as part of a celebration marking the East Kootenay Community Credit Union’s (EKC) 70th anniversary.
The funding will go towards new highway rescue safety equipment, which includes automatic vehicle stabilizers that will lift a vehicle in a controlled manner, enabling the team to better access the patient.
Additional equipment includes a ‘Jaws of Life’ as well as airbag containment covers, which are used to cover the steering wheel to prevent an airbag from spontaneously deploying.
“We recognized the number of people the organization supports and the impact their work has in the East Kootenay,” says Pam Pinch, staff representative with EKC, which recognized the need and overwhelmingly supported the Cranbrook Search and Rescue Society.
The society was formed in 1984 and consists of three divisions that include ground search and rescue, K9 and highway rescue.
The highway rescue division responds to motor vehicle collisions and helps Cranbrook Fire and Emergency Services with aircraft incidents, covering 120 kilometres of provincial highways and forest service roads.
The team responds to roughly 80 calls a year.
The grant is from a $50,000 Legacy Campaign, itself the third and final part of the celebration,which awarded $115,000 to local organizations and charitable causes.
The funding for highway rescue division is just one of a series of contributions from the EKC that has been distributed in recent months. The EKCs’ Positive Contributions Campaign gave $20,000 to eight separate organizations, each of which received $2,500.
• Branch Out Society in Fernie
• Michel-Natal Branch #081 in Sparwood
• Caregivers Network for the East Kootenay Seniors in Cranbrook
• Wapiti Ski Club in Elkford
• Twin Meadows Animal Rescue Society in Fernie
• Sparwood Community Response Network in Sparwood
• Computer Donation Program in Cranbrook
• Elkford Housing Society in Elkford
EKC also made anniversary contributions in December, by donating $45,000 — $15,000 each — to the following organizations:
• The Foundry East Kootenay supported by Kinbasket Child and Family Services
• KEYSA’s Multi-Sport Indoor Facility
• Community Foundation of the Kootenay Rockies to support Cranbrook’s Salvation Army food program
The EKC was established in 1950, and has grown to hold over $436 million in assets, serving thousands of members throughout the East Kootenay.