Fireman Dennis Drew explains what?s happening as firefighters from the Goonellabah brigade demonstrate how they cut open a car
Fireman Dennis Drew explains what?s happening as firefighters from the Goonellabah brigade demonstrate how they cut open a car

Firies show off their talents

By HELEN JACK

GOONELLABAH firies are a talented lot.

Not only can they cut open a car like a can opener does to a tin can, they can extinguish fires from metres away, clean up chemical spills without harm to the environment and, if you are elderly or disabled, they will come to your home to make sure your smoke alarm is in working order.

It was the NSW Fire Brigades' Open Day on Saturday and there were plenty of kids on hand to stand amazed as firefighters demonstrated how to contain and extinguish different types of fires and to crawl fascinated over fire engines new and old.

Goonellabah station officer Ian Grimwood said the open day was the biggest event on their calendar.

"This is the day we get the chance to show off our capabilities to the public," he said.

Mr Grimwood said the majority of NSW firefighters were volunteers who were paid a retainer while working at other jobs.

"Being part of the NSW Fire Brigades is a great way to contribute to your community," he said.

"We learn skills you would not normally have the chance to learn and you get the chance to protect life and property." Mr Grimwood said calling the brigade to a fire didn't cost anything.

"Even if the fire is out, still call the brigade so we can mop up," he said.

"If you are elderly or disabled call your local brigade and we will come and make sure your smoke alarm is fully functional, at no charge."

Millie Burnett, 9, of Goonellabah, said she was quite impressed with the displays.

"It's really cool and fun to watch," she said. "I feel more confident now to be able to deal with a fire because they have shown us how to do it.

"I think now I would like to be a firefighter."



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