NEW RIDES: Hemmo de Vries and Ian Barnden with Minister for Fire and Emergency Services Craig Crawford at the handover.
NEW RIDES: Hemmo de Vries and Ian Barnden with Minister for Fire and Emergency Services Craig Crawford at the handover. Contributed

Firies boosted by million-dollar splurge

TWO stations have been officially opened and seven new appliances, worth in excess of $1.7million, handed over in a boost to Granite Belt firefighters.

Fire and Emergency Services Minister Craig Crawford officially opened the Wallangarra and Applethorpe Rural Fire Stations on Saturday.

He also commissioned six new fire appliances for the Stanthorpe Group Brigades, costing more than $1million, as well as a $525,000 appliance for Stanthorpe's Fire and Rescue Station.

"It's vital to get the best equipment into the hands of our fire and emergency service workers and rural brigades, so they can get on with the job of keeping the community safe,” Mr Crawford said.

"The Stanthorpe group has a long history, with some local brigades being established more than 60 years ago.

"In the intervening years, the Rural Fire Brigades including Applethorpe and Wallangarra, have provided a primary response to many bush and grass fires.

"They also support their colleagues and communities over the border in NSW when needed.”

Applethorpe, Broadwater- Amiens and Severnlea West will each receive a $200,000 single cab medium appliance. Dalveen will receive a dual cab medium appliance, also worth $200,000, while the Stanthorpe Group will receive a $82,000 Ford Ranger Command Vehicle. Wallangarra RFB will take delivery of a $186,000 single cab Fuso Canter medium attack vehicle.

Assistant Commissioner Steve Smith said it was a great opportunity for the region to show off the capabilities of its Rural Fire Service.

"Our volunteer Rural Fire Brigade work hard and often for long hours and anything that makes their jobs a bit easier is greatly appreciated,” he said.

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