Thornbury first com­mu­nity to get pro­to­type fire sta­tion

The Southland Times - - NEWS - DAVE NI­COLL

The Thornbury vol­un­teer fire brigade will be the shin­ing ex­am­ple of Fire and Emer­gency New Zealand when its new pro­to­type fire sta­tion is built.

The South­land brigade has been se­lected as the first to re­ceive the new pro­to­type of fire sta­tions the or­gan­i­sa­tion will use to re­place age­ing sta­tions through­out the coun­try.

Fire and Emer­gency NZ re­gion five prop­erty co-or­di­na­tor Michael Adam said many fire sta­tions needed to be re­placed so the or­gan­i­sa­tion de­vel­oped a pro­to­type model.

Thornbury was se­lected to be the first be­cause the brigade al­ready had a piece of land des­ig­nated for a new sta­tion and it was close to an air­port, Adam said.

A new sta­tion could be built with­out im­pact­ing on the brigade and its abil­ity to re­spond to call­outs, he said.

The new sta­tion, which can hold one fire en­gine, would have ev­ery­thing the brigade would need, in­clud­ing de­con­tam­i­na­tion fa­cil­i­ties.

The old sta­tion could also be kept to com­pare with the new model, which would be used as an ex­am­ple for fu­ture builds, Adam said.

It was hoped that con­struc­tion would be­gin in May, with the new sta­tion be­ing com­pleted and ready to use in De­cem­ber, he said.

Thornbury chief fire of­fi­cer Andrew Hall said the brigade was pretty ex­cited to get a new sta­tion.

The orig­i­nal sta­tion had been built in 1965 with money that had been raised by the com­mu­nity, Hall said.

While the sta­tion was ad­e­quate for the job, it needed a lot of work and it would be cheaper to build a new sta­tion, he said.

The old sta­tion was also on land that could be flooded, and did so dur­ing the 1984 floods, Hall said.

The new sta­tion would be built on land that was not at risk of flood­ing, he said.

Hall had heard rum­blings more than a year ago from the then-fire ser­vice about build­ing a new sta­tion.

The brigade had been look­ing for a piece of land to build on and when the old Pres­by­te­rian church came up for sale, Fire and Emer­gency NZ put in an of­fer, Hall said.

The church was burnt down as part of a train­ing ex­er­cise, clear­ing the way for the new sta­tion.

As for the old sta­tion, it would be sold as is, and there had been quite a bit of in­ter­est in it, Hall said.

ROBYN EDIE/STUFF

Thornbury chief fire of­fi­cer Andrew Hall with a con­cept draw­ing of the new pro­toype fire sta­tion that is to be built in the com­mu­nity.

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