“We need more space”
Myrtleford CFA still waiting for land, concerned about safety
MYRTLEFORD CFA captain, Garry Gunson, says his brigade remains in the dark about when a desperately needed station upgrade will occur.
Mr Gunson said a move has been in the pipeline since he took on the captain’s role 14 years ago, but has remained on the backburner to government authorities.
Tim McCurdy ( MLA Ovens Valley) has sought funding for an upgrade but any move or concrete plans have not been orchestrated.
The brigade has been given priority for property on McGeehan Crescent but the land has not yet been made available by the Department of Environmental Land, Water and Planning (DELWP).
“As soon as land becomes available for acquisition we have been given dibs for it, at the moment Tim McCurdy is on board with us to fund a level two station because this is a group headquar- ters,” Mr Gunson said.
“We are at a standstill until such time.
“I keep pushing for it with both parties, the CFA and DELWP, but until they make a decision nothing is going to happen.”
The 1989-built station was de- signed to last 20 years but has remained the brigade’s home despite passing being almost a decade older.
“It’s past its use by date, it’s fallen apart and is not safe despite being in a perfect location,” Mr Gunson said.
“About 12 or 14 years ago we amalgamated from being an urban brigade to a rural brigade which meant we joined the two brigades together in the one station.
“It was too small then and it now houses the group headquarters which has got a full command vehicle.
“We have got one vehicle sitting on the lawn and another on the apron out the back.”
The station has had to install extra CCTV cameras following vandalism to the outside vehicles, while safety also remains an issue due to uneven concrete, tight locker areas and asbestos throughout the station’s roof.
“It’s not meeting our needs and it’s an occupational health and safety risk due to its age,” Mr Gunson said.
“Tim (McCurdy) has been in and guided important stakeholders through our station and pointed out all its faults, he has also obviously spoken to Wodonga and told them what the go is.
“He is right behind us so hopefully something will come of it.”
NO ROOM: Myrtleford CFA captain Garry Gunson, demonstrates the lack of space between the shed wall, lockers and vehicles at the brigade’s current station.