Young bushfire volunteer fire fighter encourages others to join brigade

Collie-Preston Bushfire Brigade volunteer firefighter Alex Price said the job was not only mentally but physically demanding. Photo: Breeanna Tirant.
Collie-Preston Bushfire Brigade volunteer firefighter Alex Price said the job was not only mentally but physically demanding. Photo: Breeanna Tirant.

Joining the Collie-Preston Bushfire Brigade as a volunteer firefighter Alex Price said it still gave him a good feeling to help out his community and encouraged others to join their local brigade.

The 22-year-old said he had been involved with the brigade since he was 20 and had been in his role as secretary for just over a year. 

"I got into firefighting because I always wanted to do it as a child,” he said.

It's just the adrenaline rush you get out of fighting fires and the feel-good feeling of helping out the community is why people should get on board.

Collie-Preston Bushfire Brigade volunteer firefighter Alex Price

"It's just the adrenaline rush you get out of fighting fires and the feel-good feeling of helping out the community is why people should get on board.” 

Within the Collie region, there are six brigades, Allanson, Collie Burn - Cardiff, Collie Preston, Harris River, Williams Road and Worsley who always welcome new volunteers.

The volunteers are the people who give up their time to help protect our region in the event of a bushfire. 

Anyone aged 16 years or older can join their local bushfire brigade and will undergo three full days of training all provided by the Shire of Collie to become a volunteer firefighter.   

Mr Price said his first experience was an “eye-opener” and that the job was not only mentally but physically demanding. 

“Pulling those hoses full of water, you need good upper body strength,” he said. 

He said the community now needs to make sure their properties are bushfire ready. 

"People need to make sure their house is clean of branches and long grasses, that their gutters are clean and all underneath their patios so they don't have leaves collected in and around there," he said. 

"Also to make sure if you have fireplaces that the chimney is nice and clean to prevent chimney fires. 

"Another big one is making sure people have a bushfire plan set in motion, making sure you’ve got an escape plan in the case of an evacuation.”

If you don’t wish to undertake prescribed burning on your property you can fill in a form at the shire, have it approved and then take it to your local brigade will be able to do a prescribed burn on your property. 

A donation to the brigade will be required for this, which will in turn go towards buying equipment.