Opinion

Tip your cap to tireless firefighters

CONCERN BUT NO PANIC: A huge bushfire impacts Peregian Springs and Coolum residents as the flames threaten their homes. The fire burnt over 500 hectares and dozens of emergency crews were deployed throughout the night. Firemen battle the heat and the bleze.
CONCERN BUT NO PANIC: A huge bushfire impacts Peregian Springs and Coolum residents as the flames threaten their homes. The fire burnt over 500 hectares and dozens of emergency crews were deployed throughout the night. Firemen battle the heat and the bleze. john mccutcheon

ONE can only marvel at the efforts of those men and women who spent much of the past 72 hours, if not more, putting themselves between strangers' homes and a wall of flames.

For some, it is a profession.

For plenty of others, it is a sacrifice of their time and energy as volunteers.

Regardless, it's extremely impressive to witness.

Swampland that's usually damp was scorched, and shifting winds did little to make life any easier for the 70-plus personnel out on the fire ground.

Watching the skill of the reconnaissance helicopter pilots darting in and out of thick smoke, buzzing around, directing the bombing efforts - which I'm told don't actually fight the fire, but clear a platform for ground crews to get in and extinguish the blaze - it was quite a spectacle.

john mccutcheon

Eyes in the air help, but it takes massive amounts of skill to predict and manipulate a fire the way those firies did.

As the fire bore down on homes along Arcoona Rd - some absolutely surrounded by dense, dry bush - firefighters were popping in between houses, fighting fronts on individual properties as the flames approached.

While the weather will take some of the credit with heavy rain coming to assist efforts on Saturday night, it shouldn't take too much.

These men and women were putting their bodies through hell, sweating it out in thick clothes with temperatures well into the 30s for someone else's home.

The credit is all theirs.

Topics:  coolum coolum fire


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