Superior Strategies hosted a demonstration of its newly acquired line of HNE Technologie AG rapid response fire fighting equipment during an open house in Thunder Bay.
“We picked up this line of equipment for the sole purpose of being able to help remote communities and remote businesses like mines with their fire fighting capabilities,” says Connor Sarazin, corporate sales manager northern Ontario with Superior Strategies. “There is a real need, especially for the remote communities, so being able to partner up with Bartec (Fire Safety Systems Ltd.) and become their exclusive distributor for all of Ontario for this equipment is all about saving lives.”
Sarazin says the advantages of the HNE Technologie AG fire fighting equipment are that it is easy to use and it only requires one person to operate.
“The reaction has been absolutely phenomenal,” Sarazin says. “Everybody loves the system — they actually have a hard time believing their eyes on the ease of use. We had a few people here and pretty much everybody was trained within 15 minutes to use all of the equipment.”
Sarazin says the HNE Technologie AG equipment is available for use on an ATV trailer.
“At first we had the unit on the back of the pickup truck, but in discussions with some of the remote First Nation communities they said they have locations within the community that aren’t accessible by a truck,” Sarazin says. “So we came up with this trailer unit that could hook up on the back of an ATV. It also comes with skis so you can hook it up to a snowmobile for the winter time so they have full protection for their community.”
Rob Barrett, owner of Bartec Fire Safety Systems Ltd., says the HNE Technologie AG equipment is “very simple to operate.”
“You turn a key, push a button, pull a hose out, you select whether or not you want straight water or foam and then you spray whatever is burning,” Barrett says. “I’ve taught grandmothers and teenagers to operate this equipment, so there is no special training. With our equipment, you need one person and the training is 10 minutes. It’s really quite simple.”
Barrett says the equipment is powered by a Briggs and Stratton engine, so the “maintenance is simple.”
“You keep gas in it, water in the tank, foam in the reservoir and you have a very effective piece of fire fighting equipment,” Barrett says. “It is a water based system, so all water based systems have to be protected from freezing. We recommend that they are kept in a heated environment during the winter, but you can mix antifreeze with the water. It is going to affect the foam slightly, but very slightly.”
Barrett says the foams that are supplied through his company are “very environmentally safe.”
“The one we recommend exceeds all the environmental standards of the U.S. Forest Service and that is the standard that Canada uses as well,” Barrett says. “The other big thing with the foam is it allows you to use a lot less water. If you’re using straight water, you are creating a bigger environmental hazard because the volume of water is actually rinsing all of the chemicals and whatever burned byproducts off into the environment. By using foam, we can reduce that down to a few litres. For example, we have a 13-litre backpack that will put out a fire in a minute with less than 13 litres of water.”
Kirstine Baccar, office and business development manager with Superior Strategies, says the HNE Technologie AG fire fighting equipment was highlighted at the June 10-12 ABM Indigenous: Ontario North gathering in Thunder Bay.
“We had a lot of very interested First Nations and non-Indigenous groups that were interested in taking a look at some of the (equipment),” Baccar says. “They had an opportunity to go out back of the Valhalla (Inn) and take a look and see some of the products.”