9 Truckless Rural Fire Brigades will be very happy

Monday, 14 Sep 2020

We can’t find where a charity has previously given 1 fire truck away for free and on Saturday at the RFBAQ General Meeting,  8 LandCruiser Light Attack fire trucks were allocated to 8 brigades that do not have a truck and the G-Wagon allocation will cascade to a brigade in South West RFSQ Region.

A group photo from the weekend's General Meeting, including two of the LandCruisers. Also Burketown RFBs Heavy Attack, which is only a couple of months away from completion!
 
Each truck is fully funded by donations from business and a very generous public and each truck will become the property of the individual Rural Fire Brigade and not the Government.
 
The RFBAQ received 16 applications from truckless brigades across Queensland who would like to improve their community defence abilities. The RFBAQ will supply these applications to the State Government and start advocating for an increased truck build programme. Each application was written and endorsed by the local RFSQ Inspector using the appropriate Government template for additional equipment. 
 
The very worthy brigades who will receive a donated fire truck are – listed by gravity. (North to South)
 
  • Fassio Road Rural Fire Brigade is a Primary Producer brigade in the Mareeba Shire. The brigade has 13 firefighters and a total of 28 members. Current equipment is 6 mop up units and a trailer. Fassio Road RFB area incorporates the Hann Tableland National Park, which adjoins a large fruit and small cropping area to the north west of Mareeba. The Brigade is active in supporting mitigation strategies with the associated landowners. Fassio Road is also highly active in supporting Paddy's Green and Biboohra RFB's as the closest neighbours, responding to fires and contributing to planned burns.

 

  • Bilyana Rural Fire Brigade is a Primary Producer brigade in the Cassowary Coast Regional Council area. The brigade has 10 firefighters and a total of 20 members. Current equipment is 3 mop up units and a trailer. The brigade is active in supporting QPWS and HQP with their annual regime for managing fuel loads on local and neighbouring estates. This work is ideally suited to light attack size appliances and often requires vehicles with sound ability to traverse the local landscape. Bilyana's immediate district is largely all primary production land (cane and bananas) and mostly level / low lying however the brigade is active in supporting operations further afield to assist neighbours with fire threats.

 

  • Bowen River Rural Fire Brigade is a Primary Producer brigade in the Whitsunday Regional Council Area. The brigade has 12 firefighters and a total of 16 members. Current equipment is 2 mop-up units. This Brigade has a very large area of operation. The allocation of the appliance would contribute to supporting the community not only in fires but in other emergencies in the community.  The Bowen River Brigade are very active within the community of both Collinsville and Whitsunday regional council area. The brigade will respond to cyclones, floods, fires and any other events within their capability of skills.

 

  • Ogmore Rural Fire Brigade is a Primary Producer brigade in the Livingstone Shire Council area. The brigade has 18 firefighters and a total of 25 members. Current equipment is 4 mop-up units and 3 trailers. The location is about 120 km north of Rockhampton and has Bruce Highway frontage of about 34 km on both sides. It includes the township of Ogmore which straddles the North Coast rail line. The posted speed limit on the Bruce Highway through the brigade area is 110 km/hr. There are frequent incidents/accidents arising as a result, often from wheel bearing failures (overheating) and collisions with straying wildlife, high speed rollovers and collisions. Currently the brigade's only means of communication is by mobile phone (sometimes patchy) and their own UHF/CB vehicle sets. Brigade members are becoming increasingly reluctant to attend highway related incidents because of safety issues surrounding their attendance. The brigade does not have one flashing light bar to their name to warn traffic of their operations in the smoke along the highway.

 

  • Kunwarara Rural Fire Brigade (will receive the 8th Landcruiser that is in the process of being fundraised by tax deductible donation). Kunwarara Primary Producer brigade is in the Livingstone Shire Council Area. The brigade has 8 firefighters and a total of 20 members. Current equipment is 3 mop-up units and 2 trailers. Kunwarara currently responds to all fire calls using privately paid and maintained 4x4 vehicles with slip-ons. Some of the major fires in the area have all been responded using these vehicle however they are finding it increasingly harder due availability and capability to use on the fire ground given they are not equipped with Crew protection devices, nor do they have emergency lighting that is safe to use in all occasions along a busy highway. Current maintenance costs for these vehicles is being covered by the limited funding the brigade has and most time individual members are fuelling up pumps and the vehicles at their own expense.

 

  • Coalstoun Lakes Rural Fire Brigade is a Primary Producer brigade in the North Burnett Regional Council area. The brigade has 22 firefighters and a total of 30 members. Current equipment is 5 mop-up units, 2 trailer units and a medium attack that is shared by 5 local brigades and is located in Biggenden. This brigade is very proactive within their community conducting Hazard Reduction Burns,covering terrain that is mountainous with extinct volcanoes which makes access an issue. Currently the brigade have two trailer units that get responded first due to the members not having unload their utes of their farming tools and equipment, followed by the slip on units.

 

  • Wetlands Rural Fire Brigade is a Primary Producer brigade in the Maranoa Regional Council area. The brigade has 41 firefighters and a total of 44 members. Current equipment is 7 mop-up units. The Wetlands RFB incorporates Attica State Forest, Chelsteron State Forest and Koolbellup State Forest. All of these have very limited fire management over the last 20+ years. The terrain is a mixture of about 30% undulating developed country, with the balance being undulating to very rough and steep, thickly timbered forest type country, mostly of sandy type soil. Effective fire control and mitigation can only be achieved at the moment by using private 4x4 vehicles, graders, dozers etc. The brigade area consists of absentee landowners through carbon farming and the area's fuel loads and risk has increased dramatically. The brigade regularly assists QPWS and local community with fire activity in the Carnarvon Ranges.

 

  • Oman Ama Rural Fire Brigade is a Primary Producer brigade in the Goondiwindi Regional Council area. The brigade has 6 firefighters and a total of 25 members. Current equipment is 1 mop-up unit. They are also extensively involved with major commercial operators and landowners for fire response and mitigation activities. The brigade currently utilises privately owned firefighting equipment to manage fire in the landscape but due to the increased level of expected response by the community an appliance is sought. This strategic location will fill a void in the fleet profile between Karara and Inglweood on the Cunningham Highway. Due to the nature of the vegetation and soil types a light attack appliance would be best suited to this location.

 

  • Bymount Rural Fire Brigade (will receive the G-Wagon cascaded vehicle allocation) is a Primary Producer brigade in the Maranoa Regional Council area. The brigade has 47 firefighters and a total of 63 members. Current equipment is 6 mop up units. The Bymount RFB sits adjacent to the Carnarvon Highway approximately 60km north of Roma and 30km south of Injune. The brigade has a large membership of active members who regularly respond to incidents in their own and neighbouring areas using the RFS supplied slip-on units. Over the years a number of fires have occurred along the Carnarvon Hwy, with increasing traffic this the occurrence of these types of incidents will continue to increase. Given the distance to supporting brigades and appliances the brigade typically operates on their own for some time before backup arrives. There are areas of bushfire risk in and around Injune a township of approximately 450 persons. The Auxiliary Brigade located in town is struggling for numbers (presently only 1 active member). Bymount RFB regularly participate in HRB's to protect the town. The provision of a Light Attack would allow them to be even more proactive in supporting local communities in both preparedness and response.
 
# Of note is that the Roma RFSQ area has 154 Rural Fire Brigades and currently only 1 Light Attack. The allocation of the 2 Light Attacks by the RFBAQ will increase this section on the fleet by 200%. There are 15 Medium attacks in the Roma Area.
 
The RFBAQ would like to thank the below donors who made these 9 fire trucks possible.
 
Sunshine Coast Broadcasting Trust
Goldburg Family Foundation
Warren Kelly
Justin Choveaux
Queensland Rail
David McMullen
Matt Corner
News Corp Australia
McDonalds Australia
 

The RFBAQ will be modifying the 6 existing LandCruiser prototypes to incorporate brigade feedback on design and the Landcruisers will hopefully be handed over to the brigade by the local RFBAQ Rep within the next 2 months.

If you would like to donate towards the Kunawarra Rural Fire Brigade LandCruiser where 100% of the donation goes into building a truck and receive a tax deductible receipt please click here.
 

Distribution of LandCruiser applications

(Green successful, yellow unsuccessful)

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