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Whistler RCMP introduces new department head

Council briefs: RMOW developing evacuation plan



The Whistler RCMP has a new officer in charge.

At the regular meeting of council on Tuesday, Sept. 5, Staff Sgt. Paul Hayes was introduced as the new operations NCO for the Whistler and Pemberton detachments.

"We're very much looking forward to working with you," said Mayor Nancy Wilhelm-Morden.

Hayes brings 17 years of policing experience to the role, the majority of which was spent in the Lower Mainland. Along with working several years in Richmond, Hayes also served as watch commander in White Rock before being promoted to the Surrey detachment. There, he worked in an administrative role before heading the detachment's media department.

During his time in Surrey, Hayes also worked in the RCMP's Diversity Outreach Program, which was created to foster connections with the city's diverse communities.

"It was a huge learning experience for myself and I very much appreciated the opportunity to network with so many fantastic groups of individuals," Hayes said. "I'm looking forward to doing the same thing here. I have a passion for it and I very much enjoy it."

Hayes replaces long-time Staff Sgt. Steve LeClair, who retired last year after a distinguished 30-year career, although he has remained at the detachment in a reserve capacity.

RMOW spearheading corridor-wide evacuation plan

In a summer that has seen thousands of British Columbians evacuated due to wildfire, the Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW) is looking to develop an evacuation plan that will encompass the entire Sea to Sky corridor.

Although a joint effort by the municipality and the District of Squamish, the RMOW is taking the lead, inviting proposals for the development of a Sea to Sky Corridor Multimodal Evacuation Plan for the purpose of evacuating Whistler, Squamish, or, in extreme emergencies, both simultaneously.

With only one major road in and out of both communities, Whistler Mayor Nancy Wilhelm-Morden said an effective plan would include various modes of travel.

"You can imagine if both Squamish and Whistler had to be evacuated simultaneously, we'd probably be faced with one big traffic jam," she said. "So we've got to think about using other modes of transportation; we need to think about rail, we need to think about buses, we need to think about air."

The deadline for proposals has been extended to Sept. 12, with officials hopeful to begin implementation next year.

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