Clubs turn out to help CFA unit go hi-tech

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Fire fundraiser: Main Ridge firefighters Jonathan O’Sullivan, Kevin Wyatt, and Neil Armstrong tuck into their morning tea. Picture: John Schmoll

MAIN Ridge Bowls and Pétanque Club aims to turn up the heat up on fighting fires – high-tech heat.

Members of the club, in a rural setting behind Arthurs Seat and near Red Hill, are now more than ever aware of the ravages of bushfire. So, with the help from football, cricket, tennis and Lions and Rotary clubs, they are holding a gala day to raise money for Main Ridge CFA to buy a thermal imaging camera.

The 10am-4pm, Sunday 19 January event is at the club at 455 Main Creek Road, Main Ridge. It will include pétanque and barefoot bowls, Devonshire teas, classic cars, live music, other family fun activities and prizes.

Local identities willing to take a dip for the cause can try the “dunking machine”.

There will be a fire safety presentation at lunch time and a display of CFA trucks if they are not required elsewhere .

Money raised will also be used to buy hay and pay for its transport to farmers in Gippsland .

“We do get an annual allowance from the CFA, but we really are dependent on community support to help fund us,’’ Main Ridge CFA president Graeme Flockart said.

“When there is a structure fire – a house or a shed – and it gets up into the ceiling, we can’t see what’s going on. Likewise, there can be hot spots in trees that we can’t see with the naked eye.

“We can point a thermal imaging camera to locate hot spots we can’t see. That means we can complete extinguishment without the risk of a flare up after we leave.

“These are the modern things that are becoming available to help us on the fire battle ground. We just need the funds to get one.”

Inquiries, donations and volunteers to be “dunked” can go to Neville Mallard, 0412 122 754.

First published in the Southern Peninsula News – 15 January 2020

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