What a lifted fire ban means for the Burnett
THE community is urged to remain vigilant even after the 'longest ever fire ban' was lifted for the South Burnett, North Burnett and Cherbourg regions last Monday.
This is according to Taromeo Rural Fire Brigade Crew Leader Dean Hunter.
"It was the longest local fire ban ever in place," he said.
The 2019/20 fire season was deemed a national bushfire crisis as more than 10 million hectares of bush, forest and parks across Australia was burned.
The fire ban lasting for four months over the bushfire season in the Burnett was cancelled on January 20, after widespread rain ranging from 75ml to 150ml fell in the region.
"It's a bit of a reprieve for the firefighters," Mr Hunter said.
The rural firefighter of five years said the recent rain meant grass was growing again around the region.
"There's a lot more fuel on the ground, so it's very important to maintain vigilance," he said.
The rural fire brigade plan to start doing hazard reduction burns.
Mr Hunter said these burns were the natural way to replenish the fuels, especially with the steep and dangerous country across the Burnett.
The community's awareness this fire season made a big difference.
"The community really helped us out, they called in lots of little fires," he said.
Often it is a concerned neighbour spotting smoke or passer-bys reporting the fires.
"We go in expecting the worst, that way we go in prepared," Mr Hunter said.
Taromeo First officer Alan Livingstone urged the community to continue this awareness, especially when using welders and power tools.
"Thanks to the local community for being vigilant for their fire awareness, they've been a big help," he said.
Over the season the Taromeo crew have helped out in the South Burnett region, as well as fires in places near the Central and North Burnett's Mundubberra and Mt Perry.
Mr Livingstone encouraged community members to join their local rural fire brigade.
"You need a passion for helping out the community and you have to know your own abilities and limits," he said.
Mr Hunter said he enjoys the camaraderie within the brigade.
"It's very rewarding to be a volunteer," he said.
With members coming from various backgrounds such as tradies, panel beaters and consultants, each brings their own life experience to the brigade.
Taromeo Rural Fire Brigade's next meeting will be at the station on Hart St, Blackbutt on February 9.