Fire Management officers are holding ‘open house’ sessions in our region in the next couple of weeks. Want to ask questions about about fire operations plans, project firefighter recruitment, firewood, pest plants and animals, traditional burning and related matters? Rock up and ask.
Fire officers say they’re interested in listening as well as providing info, so if you have a view on fire management, or knowledge of a particular area, go along and express it.
The two sessions closest to our region are in Castlemaine and Bendigo, as follows:
Bendigo Tuesday 22 August 4pm – 7pm Gateway Park Rotary Rooms,
22A High St, Kangaroo Flat 3555
Castlemaine Tuesday 29 August 4pm – 7pm Ray Bradfield Rooms,
Forest St, Castlemaine 3450
I probably should have heeded the (unintentional?) hint of scepticism and world-weariness in this blog post. The only nice thing I can say about my visit to the ‘open house’ was that the two staff at the front desk were friendly and helpful. I found the rest to be an insulting experience. First, a fire officer told me that my area of concern was to be slashed, until I pointed out that my area of interest was a different location and that it was to be burnt. I attempted to express my particular concerns about this burn, but was quickly cut off and talked over before finishing. Well sort of – the officer started to tell me how he planned to address what he thought were my concerns until he received a mobile phone call that unapologetically needed to be taken. He didn’t return. While I then wandered around for a few minutes trying to make head or tail of the other maps, another 4-5 fire officers stood around on the edge of the room chatting among themselves. (The other member of the public there at the same time was discussing fire issues with the two staff at the front desk.) I left disappointed and angry.
Mmmm…Thanks for this account of the session. We thought our post was strictly neutral…but we’ll definitely take up your experience with DELWP fire officers as soon as we can.