On Sunday 17 February 2019 Whittlesea Fire Brigade responded to reports of a structure fire in a remote rural area.
Emergency dispatchers advised that they had received multiple calls reporting a fire at that location.
Further information was that there were possibly people inside the building.
Due to the remoteness of the location and the very visible column of black smoke, Whittlesea brigade's first responding truck requested additional trucks (10 in total).
The property sat on the top a hill with a very tight driveway with a number of hairpin bends making access difficult.
Members of Whittlesea wearing breathing apparatus (BA) conducted a search ensuring the occupants had escaped while others mounted an aggressive attack on the fire.
Doreen CFA members responded within a minute of the pager message requesting additional trucks.
On arrival Doreen provided 2 BA wearers to assist with the firefight while the Doreen Pumper Tanker supported Whittlesea Pumper, Whittlesea Tanker 2 and Whittlesea Tanker 3.
Water supply was difficult due to the remote location and the tight driveway however drawing on experience from an Advanced Pumping Course a water sector was established to ensure a constant supply of water via a tanker relay.
Mernda Rehab was a most welcome addition looking after Fire Fighters Welfare along with Ambulance Victoria paramedics
Twenty units from across the district responded to the emergency.
Captain Geoff Rowden of Whittlesea Fire Brigade was very pleased with the way all brigades worked together stopping the spread of fire and saving a substantial portion of the house.
On a positive note the residents had escaped unharmed and two pet rabbits on the second-storey balcony were saved.
CFA brigades responding included Arthurs Creek, Strathewen, Doreen, Eltham, Kalkallo, Kinglake West, Mernda, Research, Wallan, Wandong, Wollert, and Whittlesea.