by John Robertson
For our training on 21st May, Paul and Kim got together to organise an excellent event. Kim and her Dad, Max, built up two timber stacks on their property for the burnoff. One stack was big and the other huge – it had a volume of over 1,000 cubic metres. Fourteen members were present led by John and Paul. The primary aim was to give our new members who are FM1 candidates the necessary practice in the use of drip torches, rakehoes and hoses on a real fire – but it was first rate experience for all of us.
Paul cast an effective weather spell and got a clear, dry night with a bright moon and the ideal wind for the occasion; light, steady and in a direction which kept the embers well clear of the trees. The new members all did their stuff perfectly and the stacks burnt vigorously but with no risk of spreading. At about 21:00 Kim and her Mum provided first class eats for most of the team who then headed back to the Station. Many thanks to the Buntrock family!
Three members stayed to monitor both fires which were still going good-style. They did not miss out on the goodies as Kim brought eats, tea and Milo to the fire. Max used his tractor and its blade to progressively consolidate the big stack. The threesome (with 52) handed over the fire to Max, the owner, just before midnight and informed Firecom accordingly. Examination the following morning showed that the burn, which was still in gentle progress, had been very successful and entirely safe.