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Canberra Today 7°/9° | Sunday, August 14, 2022 | Digital Edition | Crossword & Sudoku

Fire season goes from its busiest to its quietest

ACT Rural Fire Service chief Rohan Scott. Photo: Andrew Mathieson

IN contrast with last fire season – one of Canberra’s busiest, today (March 31) marks the end of its quietest season, says ACT Rural Fire Service CEO Rohan Scott. 

In terms of dealing with fires both locally and interstate, the 2019-20 ACT bushfire season was the busiest in the ACT Rural Fire Service’s history, whereas the 2020-21 season has been the most quiet, he says.

“It’s a stark difference,” Mr Scott says.

But he reveals that the season has had some of its own challenges, and while members have had a well-deserved break, they have missed the social and community aspect of being part of the service.

Training had to move online and community engagement activity stopped for some time, but the members and volunteers adapted, Mr Scott says.

“A very big part of what we do is community engagement and education,” he says.

The quiet season has also meant that the volunteers – there’s about 480 in the service – have missed out on skill maintenance opportunities, he says.

The opportunity to conduct hazard burns has also been limited.

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