URGENT: Residents push for return of brigade
CAPTAIN Creek residents are calling for Queensland Fire and Emergency Services to urgently re-register the local rural fire brigade.
A community meeting on Saturday at Captain Creek Sport and Recreation Hall discussed the decision made by QFES to deregister the brigade.
The community passed a resolution calling on QFES to urgently re-register the brigade and called for QFES to allow the brigade to hold an AGM to officially elect a committee.
The brigade and its members were deregistered on November 2 due to a consultation process and audit which found the brigade “could not provide an effective, safe and sustainable fire and emergency service response”.
Captain Creek resident and meeting organiser Lorraine May said she had contacted QFES asking for the requirements for a new brigade and when it would hold a meeting, but got no response.
Ms May said people at the meeting were generally “scared.”
“They walk around watching the horizon looking for smoke,” she said.
“I don’t think they considered the anxiety closing the brigade will cause the community.”
She said her property had been protected by the former brigade members. She said she was always made to feel “completely” safe.
“They know what they’re doing, they’ve very communicative when you’re in that situation,” she said.
“I can’t fault them.”
Former second officer of the brigade Jim Green said he was considering cancelling a holiday because he feared for his property.
“The response time to the fire is at least an hour from the 000 call,” Mr Green said.
“In these conditions a fire can go a long way.”
He said of the more than 100 residents who attended the meeting there was a unanimous vote for the brigade to be re-registered.
A QFES spokesperson said the group was committed to ensuring Captain Creek received an effective fire and emergency service .
“Provided all necessary requirements are met, QFES will consider the registration of another rural fire brigade in the area in the future,” they said.
Mayor Matt Burnett, who attended the meeting, said a subcommittee was formed help re-establish a brigade.
“(The) council is more than happy to support a brigade that is supported by QFES,” Cr Burnett said.