CFA readies for bushfires

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New CFA fire fighting rig ready to spring into action at Lake Eildon

CFA readies for bushfires
CFA readies for bushfires

The 2009/10 Victorian bushfire season was officially declared last week, and the Country Fire Authority (CFA) said it is ready for action with its new Lake Eildon-based Marine Fire Rescue vessel.

The customised 9m aluminium Stabicraft vessel is fitted with a through-hull water pick-up system that can pump up to 600lt of water per minute. It is powered by twin Honda BF225 four-stroke outboards that give it a top speed of approximately 75km/h. It holds 300lt of fuel and can carry up to six people

CFA project officer David Goldfinch said the new vessel would play a vital role in the Eildon region this summer, which was devastated during the Black Saturday bushfires earlier this year.

"In addition to fighting fires on the water’s edge or from the water itself, the vessel will also support on-land operations in the area," said Goldfinch.

"The vessel can transport firefighters to areas inaccessible by road, has the ability to go right up against the shore to deploy crew quickly via a folding bow ramp, and can also operate as a reliable rescue vessel."

"In trial runs with the boat fully-loaded with fuel, fire-fighting equipment and with four people onboard, the vessel’s performance was 120 per cent better than we’d expected," he added.

Based at Eildon Boat Club, the CFA said its new Marine Fire Rescue vessel would not have been possible without the assistance of Marine Safety Victoria, Honda Australia, MY Marine and various other organisations.

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