Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Raintree hydrant a community effort

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Alison Bennett Taylor, Denmark Bulletin

Denmark businesses and residents have helped bolster the community’s bushfire preparedness, funding a new hydrant that will reduce response times for volunteer firefighting brigades.

On Saturday, Emergency Services Minister Stephen Dawson unveiled the Wentworth Road hydrant which allows fire trucks to fill up from the dam at Raintree Estate in less than a minute.

The unveiling came as the State braces for what could be one of the most severe bushfire seasons in recent memory.

Local businesses and individuals banded together following last year’s devastating bushfire that burnt through more than 2000ha of land and destroyed four homes west of Denmark.

The Raintree Estate dam was an important filling station for aerial water bombers, which took 1.94 million litres of water from the 120 million litre capacity dam to suppress the Bayview Rise fire.

Mr Dawson said the fundraising initiative, spearheaded by the Birkbeck and Beaton families, had raised $8000 to strengthen community preparedness and support volunteer brigades.

The hydrant would significantly reduce response times for local firefighting brigades.

A portion of the fund also contributed to a new turnaround area for trucks on Wentworth Road, improving access for firefighters during bushfires.

“I would like to congratulate this group on an initiative that prioritises the lives and properties of their local communities,” Mr Dawson said. “In the face of devastation, they identified the importance of preparedness and found tools to support local brigades and enhance bushfire response during major incidents.

“Community-led preparedness like we have seen in Denmark is a great example of locals understanding their responsibility of ensuring their safety.”

The Fireday Regional Bushfire Fund was started with proceeds from the Re-Gin Shiraz gin produced by Raintree Estate’s Cannabis Botanical Distillery, with contributions from Binalup Rangers, Impact Services, Castelli Wines, Palmer Earthmoving, Artisan Brewery, Ray White Denmark, William Bay Cottages and local families. 

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