Extreme weather sparks help call

FEELING THE HEAT: Mooloolah station captain Trevor Stewart, pictured with auxiliary firefighters Daryl Aberley and Peter Allerdyce, is looking for more help to combat the high fire danger in the region.
FEELING THE HEAT: Mooloolah station captain Trevor Stewart, pictured with auxiliary firefighters Daryl Aberley and Peter Allerdyce, is looking for more help to combat the high fire danger in the region. Darryn Smith

EXTREME fire conditions on the Sunshine Coast have forced the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service to seek more auxiliary firefighters in the region.

There is a desperate need for part-time staff to assist the permanent crews in maintaining the protection of hinterland communities including Maleny, Beerwah and Mooloolah.

The extra support would also benefit the Caloundra and Kawana stations.

Queensland Fire and Rescue Service Area Eight Commander Lloyd Johnston said recent dry weather had sparked the need for more manpower.

"As we have officially entered what is known as our wet season, the south-east corner of Queensland has not yet received any substantial rainfall which is what is required to ease the threat of bushfires in coastal and hinterland areas of the Sunshine Coast," Mr Johnston said.

"Due to this unusual weather situation and no real weather relief in the near future, along with the amount of fires that are still occurring in the Sunshine Coast areas, the Queensland Fire and Rescue service are looking for community- minded people to increase the staff numbers at some of its stations."

Auxiliary firefighters work on a part-time basis in regional communities across Queensland.

Mooloolah Fire Station captain Trevor Stewart has been an auxiliary firefighter for more than 20 years and saw it as a way to give something back to the community.

"It's a good way to learn new skills, skills that you probably wouldn't learn anywhere else," he said.

If you are interested in providing support to your community, learning new skills, being paid for your time, are fit and healthy, live or work within three to five minutes from Maleny, Beerwah or Mooloolah stations, hold a HR licence or have the ability to obtain one, there will be an information night at Caloundra Fire Station.

The session will be held on Wednesday, January 23 at 6.30pm at 18 Industrial Ave, Caloundra.

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