Brigades of CFA: Koondrook

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A small CFA brigade is working with emergency agencies from New South Wales as well as Victoria to ensure their local community is kept safe.


Koondrook Fire Station is 250 metres from the banks of the Murray River with the town of Barham on the other side, but Koondrook Brigade Secretary Chloe Watts said the two towns are one community. 

“We work alongside Fire and Rescue New South Wales and the New South Wales Rural Fire Service, and we don’t really see any state border when it comes to protecting our community,” said Mrs Watts.

“We train together, we turn out together, and we have some social nights as well which is where we might see some friendly competition.”

Koondrook Fire Brigade will celebrate its 75th anniversary this year – a delayed event due to restrictions last year – and Ms Watts said the interstate cooperation has been a crucial element from the beginning.

“There's not much history on the very start of the brigade but our town was originally serviced by the Barham Fire Service in New South Wales before we moved to having fire stations on both sides of the border,” she said.

“Today, we’ve built a great rapport with all our local emergency agencies so if we need their assistance or if they need ours, we’re just a phone call away.

“The main incidents we head to around here are grass and scrub fires on either side of the border, but we also get a few fires at the National Park at Gunbower Island so we help FFMVic with things like unattended campfires as well.”

The brigade has also had a successful recruitment drive in recent years, attracting five new recruits to help protect lives and property around the twin town community.

“We’re a fairly small brigade but most of our members are active and another five members for a small country brigade like ours is awesome as we know that when the pager goes off, we should have a full truck,” Mrs Watts said.

“Brigade members are very valuable to the town and while we’ve got lots of dedicated members who have been there for years, our new recruits are very passionate about helping their community.”

This story is part of a new profile series which highlights our brigades and the great work they do in their communities.

Public link: Brigades of CFA

CFA member link: Brigades of CFA

Each week we will share a story from a different brigade, with all stories to be featured on the CFA website so all communities can learn more about our brigades.  


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Submitted by CFA Media