Senior Station Officer Roy Griffiths, Leading Firefighter Francisco Grech, Firefighters Matthew Kent and Brendan Edwards, who were members of a District 14 brigade, have been recognised for their extraordinary actions at a dangerous fire late at night on Sunday, 30 August 2015, when they responded to support the MFB in Meadow Heights.
Award recipient, SSO Griffiths, said during the firefighting operation crews were confronted by an armed man who had set a house and several vehicles alight.
“It was a series of events that started with a car fire, then a house fire down the road,” SSO Griffiths said.
“I was observing the scene when I spotted somebody coming towards us from up the road in a threatening manner with an axe and a jerry can.
“We withdrew our crews to what we thought was a safe place to the rear of the fire trucks, but the offender then set fire to the MFB truck.”
SSO Griffiths then enlisted FF Kent’s help in using the high pressure hose to extinguish the fire in the cabin of the fire truck before the offender returned.
They then attempted to use the hose to try to stop the armed man, but were unsuccessful and were forced into a “rapid retreat”.
“The armed offender gave chase, took a swing at FF Kent which caused him to trip over as all the crew escaped in different directions.”
The situation was made more difficult due to the lack of visibility at night. SSO Griffiths described it as “pitch black and chaotic”.