Veteran Stories:
Borden Robert “Bob” Tymchuk

Air Force

  • Victory Medal on the left; Canadian Volunteer Service Medal on the right.

    Borden Robert Tymchuk
  • Borden Robert and Eileen Tymchuk in 2002, during his last day with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

    Borden Robert Tymchuk
  • Borden Robert Tymchuk in October 2009.

    Historica Canada
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"We had to be prepared to do any of the duties connected with firefighting."

Transcript

We stayed in a regular fire hall, air force fire department fire hall. It’s where I guess they accommodated 24. Twenty-four people, and they were nice buildings. They housed the equipment with the fire trucks, crash truck and structural fire truck. Same as any other city fire department use. We had to be prepared to do any of the duties connected with firefighting. We find out, well, we ascertain as to the location and then we get the crew on the truck and we’re away. And on the way down, generally, the one in charge, the chief, would figure out what hydrant we would use and that would be the route that we took. And we’d get to where the driver, well, he’s responsible for the truck, the pump men hook up the hydrants and if the water has to be pumped, we hook up the fire truck to the big port in the hydrant and then run the lines and extinguish the fire. You can’t say that every fire is the same. Every one has a certain difference, depends whether fuel is spilled or whether there is explosives or munitions or likes of that. We used CO2, carbon dioxide and foam. Foam covers any flammable liquids on the ground. If there’s gasoline spilt, there is an application of chemical or mechanical foam. I’ll just touch onto chemical foam first and it is two liquids interacting which cause a thick blanket of sticky foam. To make it stick to whatever, they use dried animal blood that is a byproduct of packing houses. And it’s mixed in one of the liquids and the two combined make a sticky, smelly foam. The mechanical foam is very much like the detergent that you would use in your washing dishes or anything, mixed with water. As you know, detergent causes foam in your dishpan, except this through a system of turbulation, the water is agitated and it just causes the foam to appear. It’s sticky to a point but not as sticky as the chemical foam.
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