Helicopter helps volunteer snap up top prize

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A stunning picture of a firefighting helicopter flying over Strathfieldsaye Fire Brigade’s Tanker 1 has won the annual CFA National Volunteer Week Photo Competition.


Strathfieldsaye 3rd Lieutenant Jonti Hansen snapped the picture of the tanker and Helitack 335 while helping battle a large grassfire that had reignited at Harcourt North in February.

“We were working along the top of a ridge and it was pretty cool to see the helicopters do their drop in the valley then head back over the top of us to fill up at the dam,” said Jonti.

“I noticed a chopper was crossing over the top of the tanker a few times and thought it would make a good photo opportunity.

“I looked back at my pictures and thought it was good, so I submitted it to see what happens.”

The image was among more than 70 submissions received from volunteers across the state, with the photos judged among several criteria including how they best represent the CFA values of safety, teamwork, adaptability, integrity, and respect.

Mt Eliza Fire Brigade firefighter Jake Manning was named runner-up for his photo of brigade member Bethany looking over a planned burn at Lismore, Victoria.

“I was on a three-day deployment with the Planned Burn Taskforce, and we were undertaking a roadside burn at the time,” said Jake.

“My mate was looking out from the back of the truck as the smoke passed by and I thought it would be a nice picture.

“I always take photos when I’m at planned burns, so I picked one of my favourites to submit.

“For any volunteers, I’d recommend just taking a few photos when you get the chance and you never know what gems you’ll come up with.”

Jonti and Jake will receive gift vouchers, while their brigades receive framed copies of their images and non-operational equipment as part of the prize.

CFA Chief Officer Jason Heffernan congratulated Jonti and Jake and said the competition is an important part of CFA’s recognition of members during National Volunteer Week.

“These photos are not only visually spectacular, but also capture the essence of CFA volunteers,” said CO Heffernan.

“This competition highlights how the values of safety, teamwork, adaptability, integrity and respect are displayed by our volunteers every day.”

Find out more about volunteering with CFA at https://www.cfa.vic.gov.au/volunteer-careers/volunteers


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Submitted by CFA Media