New Emergency Response Centre Improves Services

Brad Cathers, MLA for Lake Laberge

As submitted to the Whitehorse Star on Friday, December 6th, 2013

by Brad Cathers, Minister of Community Services

The Government of Yukon recently opened a new Emergency Response Centre to better serve residents of Whitehorse and surrounding areas.

Located at the top of Two Mile Hill in Whitehorse, the modern 1,100 square-metre facility has space for up to six emergency vehicles in three drive-through bays and dedicated space for training and conferencing. The construction of this facility in a central location in Whitehorse is helping emergency response personnel to react more quickly to emergencies in the city and surrounding rural areas.

The centre now serves as the primary ambulance station for the Whitehorse area and is designed to operate in conjunction with the existing Riverdale ambulance station.

The building is designed to meet “Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design” (LEED) standards as well as post-disaster requirements.

The Government of Yukon recognized the need for additional emergency response capacity in the Whitehorse area a number of years ago and committed to making the new centre a reality.

Planning and development of this facility began because of a commitment made at the start of the government’s second mandate. Construction of this facility was an important platform commitment we made during the 2011 election campaign, and we are very pleased to see its completion.

The new Emergency Response Centre marks a significant investment in Yukon’s health care system and emergency response capacity.

The centre’s construction and opening comes as welcome news for area residents who now have a new and strategically-located facility that will reduce ambulance response times in Whitehorse and surrounding areas.

I want to thank everyone who was part of planning and building the new centre.

In closing, I want to acknowledge the work of our Emergency Medical Services (EMS) paramedics, who dedicate their professional lives to the prevention of tragedies, through their highly-skilled and caring response in medical emergencies. EMS is an essential partner in Yukon’s healthcare system, responding to more than 5,000 calls annually. EMS employs approximately 70 staff and has over 155 volunteers who provide service to Yukon communities.

With this new investment in infrastructure, equipment and training, Yukon government is helping to strengthen the emergency response capacity that Yukoners rely upon.