Penticton Fire Chief Larry Watkinson’s disaster dog Sammy takes a well-deserved rest at the Nassau Airport on New Providence. Both Watkinson and Sammy spent nearly one week searching for survivors after Hurricane Dorian ravaged the Bahamas. (Photo by Penticton Fire Department)

Coming Home: B.C. fire chief and disaster dog return from hurricane-ravaged Bahamas

The pair spent roughly one week on Great Abaco Island assisting in relief efforts

After nearly one week of providing relief to residents in Great Abaco, an island in the Bahamas ravaged by Hurricane Dorian, Penticton’s fire chief and disaster dog are on their way home.

READ MORE: Penticton fire chief and dog Sammy head to Bahamas in wake of Hurricane Dorian

Chief Larry Watkinson and disaster recovery dog Sammy joined a team of Burnaby firefighters deploying to Great Abaco on Sept. 8. The island, which is part of the Abaco Islands and has a population of nearly 20,000, was one of the many places devastated by the Category 5 hurricane two weeks earlier.

READ MORE: ‘Tragic scene’: Penticton fire chief, dog Sammy scour Hurricane Dorian wreckage in Bahamas

Watkinson and Sammy spent the last several days combing through wreckage to assist in efforts to locate those still missing after the storm hit. At approximately 10 a.m. on Saturday, Watkinson tweeted from the Penticton Fire Department Twitter account that he and Sammy were at the Nassau Airport on New Providence, heading home.

READ MORE: Penticton fire chief, disaster dog working in ‘extreme conditions’ in Bahamas

While there, the Burnaby team and Watkinson were successful in locating many individuals, including Canadian Dale Hill, in the wreckage. Watkinson has been a member of the rescue team since his time as the fire chief in Mission, before he transferred to Penticton. His last international deployment was with USAR in 2015 to Nepal.

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.

Jordyn Thomson | Reporter
JordynThomson 
Send Jordyn Thomson an email.
Like the Western News on Facebook.
Follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Victoria police investigating chop-shop found in Beacon Hill Park

Police asking public to register bikes with them in case lost or stolen

Central Saanich council spills plans for alcohol in public parks

Local expert Adam Sherk praises decision, warns of liberalization

Island Health issues Victoria overdose advisory

Health authority warns of increase in overdoses from opioids and stimulants

Saanich makes ALC appeal for Prospect Lake Elementary parking, portables

Council votes in favour of seeking non-farm use designation

Recent surge in COVID-19 cases not unexpected amid Phase Three of reopening: B.C.’s top doc

Keep circles small, wear masks and be aware of symptoms, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of July 13

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

B.C. NDP changing WorkSafeBC regulations to respond to COVID-19

Employers say reclassifying coronavirus could be ‘ruinous’

Baby raccoon rescued from 10-foot deep drainage pipe on Vancouver Island

‘Its cries were loud, pitiful and heartbreaking,’ Saanich animal control officer says

Statistical flaws led to B.C. wolf cull which didn’t save endangered caribou as estimated

Study finds statistical flaws in an influential 2019 report supporting a wolf cull

Beloved Island woman dies at 106

Dorothy Adair adored by the many people she met in Chemainus in two short years

Man arrested for allegedly pushing unsuspecting seniors, jumping on cars at Parksville mall

Cops arrest man after ‘aggressive incident’ at Wembley Mall in Parksville

B.C. man who went by ‘Doctor Ray Gaglardi’ charged with sex assault of teenage boys

The man, 75, is accused of assaulting teenage boys he met through Coquitlam-area churches

B.C.’s potential deficit $12.5 billion as spending spikes, taxes drop

Finance Minister Carole James gives COVID-19 outlook

Most Read