Ever wondered what happened to the Rural Fire Levy that you pay as part of your Council rates each quarter?
It goes to support the work of Rural Fire Brigades in your area. Fund raising by members throughout the year supplement these funds, which are used to purchase additional specialist equipment, food, water, pay bills and even purchase supplies for the office. Every cent goes direct to the local Brigades whose members are volunteers that fight fires, engage in hazard mitigation activities and are called on for support in times of storms, floods and other emergencies.
From truck drivers to child care workers, from teenagers to retirees, anyone can join the Rural Fire Service and the Wamuran Rural Fire Brigade proves that.
With over forty active members, men and women, this group covers an area just under 100 square kilometres - from west of Elimbah north to Beerburrum Forest and straddling the D’Aguilar Highway to the Rocksberg RFB boundary in the South and to the Delaney’s Creek RFB boundary in the west with two major forestry areas in it’s midst.
Surrounded by forests, Wamuran has a long history of organising their own fire protection. As early as 1965 the Wamuran Co-Op was the base for a Fire Warden and First Officer and was the place to go for Fire Permits in the local area.
The Wamuran Brigade has been in its current home in Old North Road since 2002 and supports three appliances and crews. Each crew is on call for one week, and shift changeover and fortnightly training happens on a Tuesday evening.
Ask any of the members why they give up so much of their time to train and commit to such a volunteer position and they will tell you it’s about meeting new people, building friendships; it’s the opportunity to build a team and learn new skills and, for some younger members, even the opportunity to try out a job before deciding on a career.
However, it is the “serving” and “protecting” community that is given as the overriding reason by so many of these men and women who come from Wamuran, Caboolture, Burpengary, Beachmere and, even as far away as Bribie Island. The main reason they give up their evenings, their days and their weekends is to commit to keeping their region, and their communities, safe.
As a volunteer you can be an Operational member where, after completing initial training, your duties can include fire fighting or undertaking hazard reduction burns and advising or assisting landowners; or you can be in Operational Support in admin, radio or other support roles.
Members of the Wamuran Brigade were deployed in the fire disaster areas of southern NSW and the ACT early in 2020; and three of their members received National medals in a ceremony early in November as recognition for years of service and commitment.
With fire and storm season underway, everyone needs a Survival Plan with an Evacuation Plan and Kit in place well before it is needed. Prepare your home and tune into warnings. It’s time to “Get Ready”.
If you are interested in joining the Wamuran Rural Fire Brigade contact the Secretary Phil on 0400 213744 or email email@example.com.
From left First Officer, Bill and Chairman, Eric with one of the Wamuran RFS Appliances