Students learn skills for life

Captain of the Tullera Rural Fire Service, John Hildebrand (left) with students from Richmond River High School and other members of the Rural Fire Services Community Education Team.

Students from Richmond River High School were captivated recently by stories from the Rural Fire Services Community Education Team.

Captain of the Tullera Rural Fire Service, John Hildebrand, and volunteer Jacky Hayter, who are both part of the team, talked to the children about fire safety and survival as part of the schools Skills for Life course. They also spoke about their experiences last month when the Tullera, Dunoon and The Channon brigades were called to assist residents in Dunoon after the massive, tornado-like storm hit.

We were the first to arrive as we are a rapid response crew, and part of our charter is to restore normality, said John. We did what we could, clearing the roads, mopping up and making it safe for the families, and some of our team spoke to the school children who were stranded on the buses.

The children were in shock at first and sat in silence until some of our volunteers were able to reassure them and explain it was safer to remain on the bus away from the live powerlines.

Jacky, who is a Richmond River student as well as a volunteer firefighter, became a member at just 14.

Its great when you know you are helping someone, she said.


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