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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Katoomba - Blue Mountains

    Default NSW Brothers Giving A Helping Hand

    NSW Firefighters will lead a crack firefighting force heading to the United
    States next week to help fight the country’s worst fires in half a century.

    US President George W Bush will tonight officially sign a bill from Congress
    granting immunity from prosecution for Australian firefighters to join the
    firefighting effort in America. A formal request to Australian authorities will

    “In response, NSW will send the strongest contingent of 50 firefighters out of
    the expected Australian and New Zealand force of 110,” Mr Debus said.

    “The fire situation in the US is the worst that authorities have faced for more
    than 50 years. Hundreds of homes have already been lost in the flames and
    thousands more are threatened.

    “These fires have been raging for several months and the official US bushfire
    season is only just beginning.

    “The call-up of our firefighters is testament to their high levels of skill,
    training and expertise as seen during our own most recent bushfire crisis over
    Christmas and New Year.

    “We should all be proud that our firefighters have earned such international
    recognition and respect.”

    The NSW Rural Fire Service will send 20 firefighters, National Parks and
    Wildlife Service another 15 and NSW State Forests also will send 15.

    Minister for Forestry, Kim Yeadon said that a State Forests senior firefighter,
    who last week flew to the United States to assess the situation, has confirmed
    the need for Australian firefighters to assist in the effort.

    “A NSW State Forests officer will act as an international liaison for the
    Australian contingent,” Mr Yeadon said.

    “The Forestry Officer has reported that the situation is extremely serious and
    we should lend a hand as soon as possible.

    “NSW firefighters will be on their tour of duty for up to two months and are
    expected to leave as early as next week, following rigorous medical assessment
    and extensive briefings.

    NSW Rural Fire Service Commissioner, Phil Koperberg said the force would report
    to the National Inter-agency Fire Centre, the body coordinating much of the US
    firefighting effort.

    “They will be deployed primarily as fire-ground supervisors and aviation
    specialists,” Commissioner Koperberg said.

    For more information - MEDIA ONLY - Kate Meagher 0418 424 654 / 9995 6500
    (Office of Minister for Emergency Services)

    Make sure you all look after them while there over there

  2. #2
    FIGJAM lutan1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    I come from The Land Down Under!

    Thumbs up

    Aussie, Aussie, Aussie!

    OIH! OIH! OIH!

    We come from the land down under....

  3. #3
    IACOJ BOD FlyingKiwi's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2002
    New Zealand


    And to the 20 Kiwis's on their way, Kia Kaha Bro's.

    It is just a shame they have all been waiting for legislation to be signed removing the threat of civil law suits while on on duty.
    Psychiatrists state 1 in 4 people has a mental illness.
    Look at three of your friends, if they are ok, your it.

  4. #4
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Silver City, Oklahoma USA


    What was the problem with civil suits? Are firefighters from other countries protected/not protected by law in a different manner?

    Anyway, good to hear help is on the way. You guys should bring plenty of extra department t-shirts. I'm sure they'll be quite a hot item!
    Bryan Beall
    Silver City, Oklahoma USA

  5. #5
    IACOJ BOD FlyingKiwi's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2002
    New Zealand


    Silver City.
    My understanding was that prior to the signing of the agreement, our guys could be sued in a civil action for any damages or injuries that occured as a direct result of them doing their job.

    Be that to public members or property, or more importantly wildland firefighters.
    Psychiatrists state 1 in 4 people has a mental illness.
    Look at three of your friends, if they are ok, your it.

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