New snow fleet boosts Buller re­sponse

Mt Buller News - - FRONT PAGE -

NEW over-snow ve­hi­cles have boosted brigade morale and re­sponse ca­pa­bil­ity at CFA’s Mt Buller fire bri­gades.

Side-by-side ve­hi­cles fit­ted with snow tracks have been strate­gi­cally placed around Mt Buller to im­prove trans­port op­tions for CFA vol­un­teer fire­fight­ers dur­ing win­ter.

Ca­pa­ble of car­ry­ing five peo­ple, it will be used with reg­u­lar tyres out­side of the snow sea­son.

Op­er­a­tions man­ager Paul King, the re­gional com­man­der of the Hume re­gion which takes in the alpine re­gion, said the new ve­hi­cles had been wel­comed by vol­un­teer fire­fight­ers.

“Vol­un­teer fire­fight­ers at Mt Buller of­ten work in jobs such as ski in­struc­tors, lift op­er­a­tors and in hos­pi­tal­ity dur­ing the snow sea­son.

“It’s a big ask to ex­pect them to also get up in the mid­dle of the night, of­ten dur­ing in­clement weather, to at­tend a call-out and CFA is very proud and grate­ful for their ser­vice,” he said.

“Pre­vi­ously, mem­bers of­ten had to make their way to the sta­tion on foot, some­times in the mid­dle of a snow storm.

“These new ve­hi­cles make it a lit­tle bit eas­ier for them to get to the sta­tion to do their job and keep the com­mu­ni­ties safe – it’s the least we can do for them.”

Mr King re­cently led a del­e­ga­tion from CFA head­quar­ters which vis­ited the brigade to in­form a new strat­egy for the alpine re­gion.

“CFA’s pres­ence in the alpine re­gion is vi­tal due to the com­plex con­di­tions, which in­clude high-den­sity ac­com­mo­da­tion and ex­treme weather, which makes it more dif­fi­cult both to turn out to and fight fires and to evac­u­ate large groups of peo­ple,” he said.

“By meet­ing with mem­bers and see­ing first-hand the con­di­tions that they op­er­ate in, we can make sure that we are do­ing ev­ery­thing we can to sup­port them now and into the fu­ture.”

SNOW FIRE: A new pumper tanker with wheel chains (above left). NEW IN THE YARD: One of the new snow fleet ve­hi­cles, which help vol­un­teer fire­fight­ers get to their bri­gades (above right).

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