Suite of upgrades part of sleek new $800K fire appliance
WHEN an emergency strikes, Airlie Beach firefighters will now be able to respond faster and with state-of-the-art equipment as they have just been kitted out with a sleek new $800,000 appliance.
Fire and Emergency Services Minister Craig Crawford officially unveiled the appliance at the Airlie Beach Fire and Rescue Station today.
Airlie Beach Fire Station acting station officer Nick Moss said the new vehicle provided upgraded technology, such as extra stability controls, and had a slightly bigger capacity to carry materials such as foam.
It also travels faster and has a more user-friendly design, he said.
This includes being able to move heavy equipment on sliding mechanisms, helping to provide easier access, as well as enhanced equipment for road crash rescues.
“Our old appliance had the same ability but not capacity and there’s a lot more ability for lifting heavy weight,” he said.
“It’ll be used for first response and is the standard across the state.”
Mr Moss said the station had been using the vehicle for a few months now and the team had been pleased with its capabilities.
“All the things that are different to the old truck are an improvement,” he said.
“For the community, seeing a new, up-to-date fire appliance gives you assurance that their emergency services are well equipped.
“We’re happy to have it and to operate out of a new piece of kit.”
Fire and Emergency Services Minister Craig Crawford handed over the Type 3 appliance as part of the QFES Fleet Replacement Program.
“Firefighters here at Airlie Beach respond to a wide range of emergencies each year and this state-of-the-art appliance perfectly suits the needs of this station,” Mr Crawford said.
“This Scania Type 3 appliance carries water and both A and B class foam and has a rear-mounted pump that can disperse 4500L of water per minute.”
Mr Crawford said the vehicle would also carry specialist equipment including the jaws of life, a thermal imaging camera and gas monitor for responding to road crash rescues, swiftwater rescues and hazardous incidents.
“We’ve replaced more than 500 vehicles in the fire and rescue rural fleet in the past four years, so firefighters are fully equipped to respond when emergencies threaten,” he said.
“The Airlie Beach station’s 25 staff responded to 212 incidents during the 2019-20 financial year, including 205 for which they were first responder.
“This vehicle with its extra capabilities, along with the impending station upgrade to a seven-day permanent day shift model with five additional firefighters, will help QFES support the growing needs of the area and help build a more resilient Queensland.”
As part of today’s presentation, Airlie Beach Station Officer Kevin Tomas also received a QFES Medal for his longstanding service and commitment to ethical standards, diligence and personal integrity.
“Mr Tomas’ dedication and loyalty to the service of his community in times of need is exemplary,” Mr Crawford said.
The Airlie Beach Fire and Rescue Station has been operating for 40 years and provides fire and rescue response to Shute Harbour, Airlie Beach, Cannonvale and the surrounding areas.