Fire debrief exposes questions over response

December 4, 2023 8:01 am in by

The Rural Fire Service has confirmed there was an initial one-hour delay in deploying locally positioned aircraft over the Barton Street Fire in Scone.

The issue was raised by someone in the crowd at a public debriefing on the fire held yesterday at Scone High School.

The man stated the aircraft was on 15-minute standby at the town’s airport but took a lot longer to get their orders to take off.

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Incident controller, Superintendent Paul McGrath told the meeting…the delay was not caused by anyone locally.

“That’s been dealt with. There was a breakdown at head office,” he said.

UPDATE – The RFS Liverpool Range District has subsequently checked their records to respond in more detail to the questioner.

They have advised the Hunter Valley Newsroom that the fire was reported at 12:38.

A request to deploy aircraft was made at 12.41. This was approved by the RGS Air Desk in Sydney at 12.47.

The aircraft subsequently took off from Scone Airport at 1:02.

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Liverpool Range District Superintendent Paul McGrath addresses the public meeting yesterday at Scone High School. Image: Darren Cutrupi

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