Canobolas puts Category 6 tanker through its paces
Published Date: 07 Feb 2013
Communities in the Canobolas Slopes area may soon benefit from a new design of fire tanker that can carry more than twice as much water as regular firefighting tankers.
NSW Rural Fire Service Canobolas Zone Infrastructure Coordinator Arthur Sharp said this one off prototype has been delivered this week for field trails and evaluation by some of our fire fighters, and is hoping that it will be particularly useful in some of the Zone's more open country.
"This truck is unique because it can not only carry 9,000 litres of water and has an automatic transmission, but can also be operated by a very small crew or even a single firefighter if required, who can fight fires from the front seat.
"The driver simply selects the correct spray range and water pressure to suit the incident and moves the hose mounted on the front of the truck using a remote control. This feature coupled with spray bars, wheel sprays and other crew area based monitors the tanker has ample water power to tackle grass type fires.
"This new prototype also has an innovative 'on board foam system' allowing firefighters to fight bush fires with bush firefighting foam, and house, fuel and vehicle fires with different specialised foam.
"One of the challenges of firefighting is frequently having to refill the truck with water.
"This bulk-water firefighting tanker means we won't have to refill as frequently, allowing our firefighters to get on with the job of protecting homes and saving lives.
Following the test at Canobolas the tanker is now likely to travel north to help the firefighting effort in Moree, Narrabri and Gwydir.
"This year we've already seen more than 4,000 bush fires in NSW. This should be a wakeup call to anyone who doesn't have a bush fire survival plan. People can download a plan from www.rfs.nsw.gov.au.
"It only takes around half an hour to complete; a small investment of your time that could help save your home or even your family if a bush fire strikes," Mr Sharp said.