New home for CFS air operations

NEW SHED: CFS regional operations director Mick Ayre who opened the new shed along with CFS Region 6 Air Support Captain Melvin Charlton, Tumby Bay CFS group officer Quentin Russ and Tumby Bay District Council mayor Laurie Collins at the opening of the new facility in Tumby Bay on Thursday.THE South Australian Country Fire Service (CFS) opened a new shed in Tumby Bay on Thursday to house equipment and vehicles for the Eyre Peninsula region’s Air Operations Brigade.
Nanjing Night Net

The project began nine years ago after the Wangary fires and after building began in 2012, the local CFS volunteers are relieved the shed is finally functional.

CFS Air Support used to be run out of rented sheds in Tumby Bay but as they were not designed for CFS use, it was time consuming when parking and unloading vehicles.

Tumby Bay CFS group officer Quentin Russ said the new shed would help the air support team immensely and would be a great asset to the region.

Mr Russ said community groups and organisations like Rotary International, MGA Insurance and the Masonic Lodge had all supported the project, putting funding toward CFS vehicles.

The shed was opened by CFS regional operations director Mick Ayre, who made the trip over from Adelaide for the opening.

Mr Ayre said it was a big occasion for the region and he was blessed to be a part of it.

CFS Region 6 (Eyre Peninsula) Air Support captain Melvin Charlton, who has been a CFS volunteer for 40 years and captain of air support since 2001, said the shed would have multiple uses.

“(The shed) will provide plenty of storage and extra space,” Mr Charlton said.

“There is also room for spare vehicles if we need to house them.”

The air support team is based in Tumby Bay as it is central to the primary response zone and it includes about 10 to 12 regular volunteers.

Mr Charlton said the role of air support was crucial to managing large fires and the new shed would make the team’s work a lot easier and the team would be able to respond faster.

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