Constable Hillary Murray

Brave Rupert police officers get provincial honour

Four police officers received a provincial nod for evacuating people who were inside a burning apartment building in Prince Rupert.

Four police officers received a provincial nod for searching and evacuating people who were inside a burning apartment building in Prince Rupert.

The B.C. 35th annual Police Honours Night selected the four RCMP officers for entering the residence that was filled with thick smoke and limited visibility.

“None of these officers hesitated to enter the smoke filled building despite obvious risks to their personal safety. For that, these four officers received the award of Valour,” said Alicia Bertrand, the public affairs officer for the ministry of public safety and solicitor general.

Corporal Jason Racz and constables Jay Patrick Collins, Hillary Murray and Geoffrey Tisdall received their honour on Nov. 17 along with 56 other police officers from the province.

Murray and Collins are still in the Prince Rupert detachment while the other two have relocated since last year.

Sgt. Dave Uppal described what happened that night.

Police responded to a call on June 19, 2015, at 4:30 a.m. that reported individuals were trying to kick in a door at 1799 Kootenay Avenue. While they were investigating, the apartment next door had observed a vehicle on fire.

They tried to put the fire out themselves, and then realized the apartment complex itself would also catch fire, which it did. They went into the building and pulled the fire alarms and went room by room. Const. Tisdall and Collins made sure the elderly and disabled residents had evacuated.

No one was injured, but the members and the manager of the apartment complex were treated for smoke inhalation. The Prince Rupert Fire Department extinguished the blaze and the physical damage was contained to the parking area roof and walls. There was smoke damage throughout the building.

“It doesn’t happen very often where you’re actually going into a building like that but obviously their actions — I would say — saved the lives of the individuals that were inside that apartment complex. Had that fire spread further or the amount of smoke damage that was done to the apartment I’m sure would have caused serious injuries to the people inside,” Uppal said.

The awards were handed out to 56 police officers who had exceptional responses to various incidents and needs. Lieutenant Governor of B.C. Judith Guichon and Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General Mike Morris presented the awards Thursday night.

Just Posted

B.C. BUDGET: Surplus $374 million after bailouts of BC Hydro, ICBC

Growth projected stronger in 2020, Finance Minister Carole James says

Ambulance crashes along Highway 16

Police and fire crews attended the scene to assist the vehicle’s passengers

Goals for giving hope nets $4,300

Prince Rupert Port Authority presented the cheque to the Salvation Army on Feb. 16

Heart of Our City: A counselor and a competitor

Roberta Edzerza has left a mark on the court and in the classroom

CityWest announces fibre-to-the-home expansion plans

CityWest plans to provide service to half the city by the end of 2018

Ice skating on the North Coast, a rare treat

Seawolves hockey players bring their gear to Oliver Lake this week to play on the outdoor rink

‘Bullet missed me by an inch’: Man recounts friend’s killing at Kamloops hotel

Penticton man witnessed Summerland resident Rex Gill’s murder in Kamloops

B.C. BUDGET: Income assistance raise still leaves many below poverty line

$50 per month increase included in funding for poverty and homelessness reduction

B.C. BUDGET: Indigenous communities promised billions from gambling

Extended family caregiver pay up 75 per cent to keep kids with relatives

B.C. BUDGET: New benefit increases family tax credits up to 96 per cent

BC Child Opportunity Benefit part of province’s efforts to reduce child poverty

B.C. BUDGET: Carbon tax boosts low-income credits, electric vehicle subsidies

Homeowners can get up to $14,000 for heating, insulation upgrades

B.C. man survives heart attack thanks to Facebook

A Princeton man suffered a heart attack while at an isolated property with no cell service

B.C. man sues Maxime Bernier’s People’s Party over trademark

Satinder Dhillon filed application for trademark same day Maxime Bernier announced the new party

New trial ordered over banning whales, dolphins at Vancouver aquarium

Park board’s appeal reverses previous decision that found it had no right to implement a ban

Most Read