Fired-up over new camera

By RENEE REDMOND

BURSTING into a smokefilled room and being able to see clearly is something that firefighters can only do on a film set.

Lismore station commander Mark Flannery said firefighters' lack of vision was their main obstacle, but 'super vision' is about to become a reality.

Lismore fire station is one of 34 NSW fire brigades that have received a thermal imaging camera which Flannery said would help firefighters see through the smoke, making their job easier.

The cameras were part of NSW Premier Bob Carr's $782,000 program to ensure firefighters were using the world's best technology.

"They have fast become one of the most important weapons to a firefighter, and many experts claim they are just as essential as a fire hose," Mr Carr said.

The NSW Fire Brigade will now assess the success of the thermal cameras to decide if more are needed.

"The cameras give us another set of eyes and help us to locate the seat of the fire which we normally can't do until the smoke clears," Mr Flannery said.

Mr Carr said the thermal imaging cameras would enable firefighters to see through smoke and find people who may be trapped.

"It means firefighters can accurately track fire spread and limit damage," he said.



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