Rural fire brigades call on region's bravest
FIREFIGHTING while surrounded by flames in the midst of the 2002 Toowoomba range fires was one of the biggest thrills of Daniel Philp's youth.
It's a story he's hoping will make an impression on members of the community as the area's rural fire brigades ramp up their recruitment drive.
As secretary of the Gatton Springdale brigade, Mr Philp is hoping to entice five new volunteers to help the team cope with the fire season, which officially began on August 1.
"After the rains that came with Cyclone Debbie, there's a lot of fuel lying around so when the fires start now, they're going to be burning pretty quickly," he said.
"With the hotter weather and this fuel on the ground, we're going to be expecting a lot of jobs."
The long-time volunteer said his father had signed him up for the job at 16 and he's never been bored since.
"When you go out to your first wildfire, it's a sensory overload," he said.
"It's a bit of a thrill, a bit of an adrenaline rush.
"But my favourite part of the job is just being able to serve the community in times of need.
"As rural landowners, it's up to us to help in emergency situations.
"Come fire season, the urban fire trucks can't be everywhere so when you've got a wildfire, you need the rural brigades there to control and protect."
Mr Philp added there was a number of support roles for those who can't help physically fight fires and encouraged landowners to clear their properties.
Find your local brigade below or phone the West Moreton Rural Fire Services office on (07) 3294 4944 to find your closest brigade.