Vernon Search and Rescue dedicated its new boat Tuesday evening.
The vessel has been named “Legacy” as a tribute to the now-defunct Okanagan Landing Volunteer Fire Department.
The search-and-rescue group was able to purchase the boat secondhand thanks to a donation the former volunteer fire department made when it disbanded.
“It was able to honour the effort and the assistance from the Okanagan Landing Volunteer Fire Department,” said Trevor Honigman, a spokesperson for Vernon Search and Rescue. “It was really a legacy of their work that made this all possible, for this boat to be on the Okanagan Lake right now.”
The purpose-built boat will improve the organization’s ability to respond to requests for help when there is inclement weather, Honigman said.
“This is a lot larger than the boats we’ve had before, and that gives us the ability to tackle large waves and wind conditions at night that we didn’t have before,” Honigman said.
The search-and-rescue group has been training on the new boat, although it hasn’t had to be deployed in a rescue operation yet.
On Tuesday night, the group took former volunteer fire department members for a ride so they could see the benefit of their donation.
–With files from Megan Turcato