Wodonga Fire Brigade advises the local community to be aware of new traffic lights installed to assist incident response, after fire trucks recently experienced tricky turn-outs from their new station on Thomas-Mitchell Drive.
Volunteer and career firefighters moved from the former fire station on Smythe St to the state-of-the-art facility on 22 January, after two years of planning, community consultation and construction.
While the Brigade has settled in well to their new surrounds, some of the 58 incidents they have responded to from the station almost resulted in accidents with cars disobeying the traffic lights installed and activated during a turn-out to an incident.
Wodonga Fire Station A/Officer-In-Charge Sam Dennis highlighted the importance of slowing down around the new station to make sure motorists remember to stop on the red light when it’s activated.
“Many motorists have been very accommodating, but we want to remind everyone that these traffic lights must be obeyed when we’re driving fire trucks out of the station – not only to ensure we get to an incident as fast as possible, but also so there are no vehicle accidents caused by failure to stop at the lights in the vicinity of the new station,” Mr Dennis said.
“On a positive note, we are thrilled to have moved into our fire station, after more than 40 years of operating from the old site.
“The day we moved went fairly smoothly, although we did have to attend a grass fire just behind the new station. All in a day’s work!
“It’s been great to see how well our community has worked with us to adjust to the new location and we’re really grateful for how supportive everyone from CFA and the community has been throughout this whole process.”
The $7 million station has five engine bays and 10 bedrooms to support firefighters in preparation and recovery from the growing number of incidents in Wodonga, resulting from strong population growth as the fourth largest city in regional Victoria. The project was part of CFA’s 350 Firefighter Program (P350) – a Victorian Government commitment to improve service delivery through growing the workforce and enhancing infrastructure and equipment.
The Brigade is planning an official station opening and Community Day in the coming months where locals will be able to tour the new station and enjoy fun entertainment and refreshments.