Mindless ratbags steal rural firies' hand radios

IT was a stupid act that might have put the lives of an entire town at risk.

Last week, as volunteer firefighters were run off their feet battling an outbreak of grassfires across Central Queensland, uncaring thieves stole six two-way radios from a Dululu rural fire truck.

The theft, from the Dululu fire shed sometime between September 28 and 30, left this brigade's firefighters with no hand-held communication equipment, their only form of emergency contact during fires.

Had this crew been called to a fire, they would have been forced to go out without this crucial equipment, said Col Vardy, first officer of the Dululu rural fire brigade.

“Lives could have been put at risk and we were lucky we weren't called to fires on Wednesday (last week),”Mr Vardy said.

Mr Vardy, who reported the incident to Goovigen police, is urging the thieves to simply drop the radios back at the Dululu fire shed.

“The radios are engraved so they won't be able to be sold for anything,” he said.

Fire authorities said the Dululu crew would be given hand-held radios if they were called out.

Mr Vardy, who has been a volunteer firefighter for nearly 30 years, works full-time for the Department of Community Safety and is also a part-time volunteer for the State Emergency Service.

He told Central Telegraph that despite the degree of media coverage, the radios had not been returned more than a week after being taken.

The brigade had not attended any fires since the theft.

Anyone with information that might assist police should contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.


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