Bushfire warriors

DURING a forest fire they are sent to do the hardest, dirtiest work. Armed with everything from shovels to bulldozers, the fire gangs are known to insiders as the elite troops in the state’s firefighting army. Bushfire Front chairman Roger Underwood said now that the worst fire season for a generation was finally over, it…

Keep Your Head When the Heat Is On

I have no awareness of the details of the Lancefield fire in Victoria that broke control lines and subsequently burnt 3,000 ha. This comment is not about those details which will be revealed soon enough through an independent investigation. I feel compelled however, to comment in response to the insulting and disrespectful remarks made by…

Fires left eye in the sky dark

After a decade of watching WA’s biggest bushfires from the State’s most impressive vantage point, Mike Stewart is immune to sights others would find terrifying or shocking. But, last summer’s blazes have left the Department of Fire and Emergency Services aerial attack supervisor with surreal firefighting memories he will carry for years. As fires inched…

Our bushfire luck is running out

WA fire crews are bracing for a once-in-a-century catastrophe this summer, akin to Victoria’s Black Saturday. And as authorities declared WA’s luck could run out, a Department of Fire and Emergency Services survey showed an alarming number of West Australians were underprepared for the upcoming fire season and were failing to follow the most basic…

Western Power grants boost life-saving equipment for bushfire brigades

The Association of Volunteer Bush Fire Brigades was pleased to have donated significant time to assist Western Power develop and deliver another year of deeply appreciated grants for Brigades. Below is the original media statement published by Western Power announcing the outcome of our combined work. Western Power grants boost life-saving equipment for bushfire brigades…

Article: Living with Bushfires

Here’s an interesting article we found recently published by one of Australia’s leading Science Journalists, Dr Paul Willis   I choose to live in an area of high bushfire risk. I’m not alone, many of my fellow Australians live in similar areas on the margins of our cities or in country and rural areas. As the…

Country Fire Service brigades maintain firefighting boycott following lower Eyre Peninsula blaze

South Australian volunteer firefighters have renewed threats to boycott fighting fires on State Government land, following a fire on the lower Eyre Peninsula on Saturday. The fire burnt through scrubland in the Lincoln National Park near Port Lincoln before it was brought under control just before 7:30pm. Last year, several Country Fire Service (CFS) brigades…

Factsheet: Qld ‘Presumptive’ legislation

Below is a text version of the Fact Sheet published by Queensland’s Worker’s Compensation Regulator explaining their new “presumptive legislation” covering both volunteer and paid firefighters who contract cancer. We thought it was useful information for WA’s Volunteers who have been told a Bill to provide cover for them would be introduced into Parliament before…

State’s heightened fire risk

WA FIREFIGHTERS are preparing for another busy season in the state’s south, with above-average fire potential forecast for 2015-16. The above average fire potential for much of the State’s southern half, highlighted in the Southern Australia Seasonal Bushfire Outlook 2015-16, was attributed to low rainfall, lack of soil moisture and high fuel loads, and comes…

Victorian firefighters in fight for easier compensation for work-related illness

A FERNTREE Gully man is among thousands of firefighters across the state pushing for fairer compensation for illnesses resulting from their work. Bill Watson, the Volunteer Fire Brigades Victoria district 13 president, told the Leader the hundreds of volunteer firefighters in the district — which includes Knox, the Yarra Ranges and Maroondah — would be…

Fire station officially opens

YEARS of campaigning and hard work by the Collie community has come to fruition as the Allanson Volunteer Bush Fire Brigade Fire Station was officially opened last Friday. The old station site was constructed in the 1970s from an old BP Service Station office, before being condemned due to safety concerns. Plans to develop a…

Productivity Commission urges emergency services to ditch radio communications devices for $6.1 billion in savings

Fire fighters, police officers and other emergency services should use phone companies like Telstra for their future communications needs because a dedicated service would cost $6.1 billion over 20 years, according to a draft report from the Productivity Commission. State governments and organisations like the Police Federation of Australia have long said that a dedicated…