Sunday, November 19, 2023

Pigeon Post News Exclusive - Kiwi Firefighters Continue Heroic Efforts Down Under


The Fire and Emergency New Zealand's Bravo Teams. Photo credit Fire and Emergency New Zealand.

"Bravo Down Under: Kiwi Firefighters Brave Queensland's Blaze with Determination"

Richmond, Tasman - November 19, 2023

In a striking display of trans-Tasman solidarity, Fire and Emergency New Zealand's Bravo deployment has landed in Queensland, stepping up to the plate as the state braces itself for heightened bushfire conditions.

Queensland's recent respite from the relentless bushfires took a brief pause as the number of active fires rose to 54, prompting the Queensland Fire and Emergency Service (QFES) to issue a warning about the impending danger. The Bravo team, a contingent of 22 personnel including four five-person crews and two strike team leaders, arrived just in time to relieve the Alpha strike team, whose valiant efforts saw the number of bushfires reduced from 70 to 38 in the past 10 days.

Deputy National Commander Steph Rotarangi expressed gratitude for the hard work of the Alpha deployment, which marked the 70th overseas deployment for Fire and Emergency New Zealand. Rotarangi highlighted the multifaceted efforts of the teams, not only in combating the fires but also in engaging with the local community to uplift spirits.

"The Alpha team's dedication has been commendable, and we extend our heartfelt thanks to them and their families back home. The Bravo team is ready to maintain the high standards set by our Alpha deployment," Deputy National Commander Rotarangi stated.

The Bravo strike team will be stationed in the Carnavon area in central Queensland, taking over from the Alpha team that had relocated after initially working on the Wallangarra, Dalveen, and Donnybrook fires. Their tasks include clearing blocked access routes, identifying and treating hotspots, and executing strategic back burning operations to contain the spread of the fires.

"I know our Bravo team will only continue to hold the high standards demonstrated by our Alpha deployment,” Rotarangi added.

The Alpha strike team returned to New Zealand on Saturday evening, concluding their mission in Queensland. The six-person Alpha Incident Management Team, which played a crucial role in coordinating efforts, came back on Friday evening.

 The Fire and Emergency New Zealand Alpha Teams. Photo credit Fire and Emergency New Zealand.

As Fire and Emergency New Zealand has not received further formal requests for assistance from QFES, the Bravo deployment is expected to be the final mission to Queensland for now. The collaboration between Fire and Emergency New Zealand, the Department of Conservation, and Central Forestry Services exemplifies the strength of international partnerships in times of crisis.

The Pigeon Post News salutes the unwavering commitment of these Kiwi firefighters, extending our thoughts to their families and communities back home as they continue to demonstrate courage and solidarity in the face of adversity.

Fire and Emergency New Zealand media team.

Pigeon Post News, Richmond.

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