Blue Mountains Rural Fire Service shines at state championships

Blue Mountains Rural Fire Service (RFS) members are still celebrating after a strong showing at the RFS State Championships at Narrabri on September 17-18.

Bullaburra Rural Fire Brigade deputy captain, Bob Homfray, took out first place in the Pilliga Chainsaw Challenge against some of the best in the state.

“Bob’s placing is testament to his excellent skills with a chainsaw,” Blue Mountains RFS district manager, Superintendent David Jones.

Crews from all over the State descended on the Narrabri Showground for two days of competition and camaraderie.

“The Blue Mountains District competed in four separate divisions designed to test their skills, abilities and problem solving expertise with very creditable results,” said Superintendent Jones.

“The weekend was an opportunity for crews from the district to demonstrate not only their technical and practical skills but also their readiness to assist our community.”

The competitors were challenged with a range of fire fighting, catering and chainsaw activities. Crews were also required to operate in difficult wet and muddy conditions.

Winmalee Rural Fire Brigade entered a crew who competed in over nine events, ranging from fireground fundamentals (media engagement and  communications), tanker readiness test and extinguishing a variety of fires in a range of scenarios including motor vehicles, farm machinery and buildings.

The Winmalee crew came second in two events - ‘Smoke and Mirrors’ (a test of crew resource management and problem solving) and ‘Suck it Up’ (involving draughting water from a water source to cool a large LPG bullet tank that was alight).

Overall the Winmalee crew was placed fourth.

Blue Mountains Group Support Brigade, with a crew of four, competed in the ‘Eat Street Catering Challenge’ providing meals to the competitors and marshalls at the championships, despite the trying conditions.

Faulconbridge Rural Fire Brigade entered a junior team who competed in events that involved pumping, hose lays, hand tools use and extinguishing fires. The team was a credit to the Blue Mountains District, demonstrating exceptional team work and skill.

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