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Fire Country | Chapter Four
"Fire in the Deep" Queensland Fire and Emergency Services now has a co-ordinated response to large scale emergency events such as the bushfires in Deepwater in 2018. This is held up by the continued dedication of local volunteers who give everything to protect what is theirs. Part four of a four part series celebrating 70 years of the Rural Fire Service in Queensland.
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Date Published: 19 September 2019
All Videos: 18 videos on 2 pages
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"Fire in the Deep" Queensland Fire and Emergency Services now has a co-ordinated response to large scale emergency events such as the bushfires in Deepwater in 2018. This is held up by the continued dedication of local volunteers who give everything to protect what is theirs. Part four of a four part series celebrating 70 years of the Rural Fire Service in Queensland.

"Forging the Brigades" The Rural Fire Service came from the humblest of beginnings some seventy years ago, relying on the dedication of local community members to come together for the greater good. Part one of a four part series celebrating 70 years of the Rural Fire Service in Queensland.

"Heart of Flame" Rural firefighters have a deep connection to the land they help protect, relying on knowledge passed down through the generation. Part two of a four part series celebrating 70 years of the Rural Fire Service in Queensland.

"From Ashes" Out of the ashes of the devastating 1994 bush fire season in Queensland came the Rural Fire Service we have today. In those days, local brigades fought with community spirit and their own ingenuity to try and make a difference during one of the most terrifying bush fire events in Queensland's history. Part three of a four part series celebrating 70 years of the Rural Fire Service in Queensland.

Wall of Water. Firefighters clock on not knowing what each shift will bring, but no-one could have ever predicted the events that would unfold in early January 2011. Crews put their own lives at risk, battling raging flood waters and horrendous conditions to rescue men, women, children, and even helping animals, after a wall of water devastated communities across south-east Queensland. While they were later awarded for their bravery, the firefighters who performed swift water rescues and land searches remain humble, saying they aren’t heroes – they were simply doing their job.

The Hot Zone. The job of a firefighter comes with tremendous danger and crews willingly put their lives at risk for the safety of others. But even the bravest of firefighters couldn’t hide their fear when faced with a ticking time bomb in Ipswich in 2013. Crews were called to Clay Street where they found large amounts of explosive hazardous material scattered throughout a property. Emergency services had to make a difficult call – detonate now or risk an unexpected explosion.

Bearing the Load. “Some of those images and experiences you see, you never get to wipe from your memory.” Firefighters are still haunted by the memory of seeing Harold and Lucy Schimke’s crumpled car on the side of the Warrego Highway near Ipswich in 1999. Crews were certain the occupants had no hope – their car had been almost completely crushed by a 40-tonne truck. But miraculously, fate had other plans that day…

SEASON TWO Ipswich: Reid’s Department Store It took just one night to reduce more than a century of history to blackened rubble. Reid’s Department Store on the corner of Brisbane and Bell streets stood as a symbol of Ipswich’s prosperity until it succumbed to fire in the early hours of a cold 1985 August morning.

Saving Grace: Fortitude Valley, 2013 Five stories high at Cathedral Place, the residents were ready to jump. Firefighter Marcus Maffey climbed onto the aerial ladder, primed for extraction. With flames ripping across the rooftop, Marcus and his firefighting partner worked to rescue the occupants against time, using a jammed rescue appliance. To save the terrified residents, Marcus made the choice to remain on a balcony and allow the occupants to descend in the ladder cage. His choice left him stranded and vulnerable, facing fire and heat as they rampaged towards him. Produced by Brendan Bowen, #BrassHelmet

The Great Fire of Brisbane, Brisbane CBD, 1864. Local fire historian Ken Capell has lived and breathed firefighting in Queensland for decades. Winding his way through the bustling Queen Street mall, Ken shares the unknown stories of the city’s biggest and most influential fire, that of 1864, the Great Fire of Brisbane. Consuming fifty homes, two banks and three hotels, the Great Fire destroyed the heart of Brisbane. Such was the devastation that firefighting became an established order within the city, and the foundations were laid for the service we now know as Queensland Fire and Emergency Service. Produced by Brendan Bowen

Sea of Flames: Golden Fleece Oil Terminal, Hamilton, 1969 ‘We were finished, we were history,’ Errol Fancourt stood in a sea of water and burning oil, attempting to douse the perilous flames as they swirled around his legs. Sixteen firefighters were injured in the torrid wrestle to control the heat as nearly a million gallons of fuel threatened to ignite, bringing Brisbane’s massive diesel terminal to the brink of annihilation. Produced by Brendan Bowen #Brass Helmet

Nowhere to Go, Mactaggarts Woolstore, Newstead 1990. It was so big, the fire was sucking them in like a monster, Tom Dawson remembers. One of Brisbane’s fiercest fires, ferocious beyond belief, the 1990 Woolstore combustion shot flames though the sky, setting alight neighbouring buildings and leaving nothing but an empty, radiating shell. Substation Officer Tom Dawson stood trapped between two buildings as jets of fire leaped from one structure to the next, cindering all in their path. Within an hour of the building lighting up, the historic Woolstore was gone…

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