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NZ Firefighters Involved in Australian Accident


CJoint Media Release
From the Department of Sustainability and Environment (DSE) and the Country Fire Authority (CFA)

Saturday 16 December 2006 1730 hrs


NZ Firefighters Involved in Australian Accident

Incident At Howqua Valley

An incident occurred at the Howqua Valley, north of the Mount Terrible fires, at 2.30pm involving nine New Zealand firefighters.

This is a particularly severe fire season and we continually remind everyone involved in this massive fire to be conscious above all of their own safety. This incident involved nine very experienced firefighters, two of whom were with us in the 2003 Alpine fires. Three have been air lifted to the Alfred Hospital. They have suffered burns but all are stable and expect to be released within two to three days. The other six are being treated locally with minor injuries and will be released in the next 24 hours. Ewan Waller Chief Officer said

The safety of our firefighters is always of paramount concern, but this incident is an example of the risks that can never be completely eliminated.

Every endeavour is made to ensure that our firefighters are not placed in situations where their safety is at risk, but bushfire fighting will always be dangerous. Ewan said.

To date no firefighters have been seriously injured in the fires and we are concerned and dismayed at this incident, involving our colleagues from New Zealand

I would remind people to listen to their local ABC Radio for up-to-date fire information and to use the DSE and CFA websites, Ewan concluded

Ends

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