Planned burn leads to prize-winning picture

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A CFA volunteer who snapped a quick pic while attending a planned burn has won the annual National Volunteer Week Photo Competition.



The image shows the controlled flames in long grass at Mernda, while volunteers can be seen in the back of the fire truck via the vehicle’s rear vision mirror.

Epping Fire Brigade volunteer Deb Azzopardi said she took the image from the passenger seat during a quiet moment of the burn.

Full winner

Full winning image

“The fire had been lit and we while we waiting for further instruction, I saw the crew on the back and thought it looks amazing, so I grabbed the mobile and took a couple of photos,” said Deb.

“I think it really captures the anticipation of the moment.”

Deb said it’s important to always be prepared as you never know what you may capture.

“I take my mobile with me everywhere and take a lot of photos. I came across this one again when I was sorting out some photos and thought I’d submit it and see what happens.”

After receiving submissions from across the state, the photos were marked against a variety of criteria, and judged to best represent the CFA values of safety, teamwork, adaptable, integrity and respect. 


Chewton Fire Brigade volunteer Steve Womersley was named as the runner-up, after taking a picture of fellow brigade members amid the smoke.

“It’s a photo of my mate Mouse (Barry Mounsey) who’s always got a keen eye for a dangerous tree,” said Steve.

“A fire had broken out in the scrub outside Lexton and we’d been called there the following day to help with blacking out.

“The light was lovely and we were in a position where we weren’t too pressured so I had the opportunity to step back and take a couple of good shots."

CFA Chief Officer Jason Heffernan congratulated everyone who submitted stunning images.

“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, adaptable, integrity and respect are displayed by our volunteers every day.”

Find out more about volunteering with CFA at



Submitted by CFA Media