Fired up for open day

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Realistic crash scenario among attractions

The new-look Oamaru Fire Station will be open to the public between 11am and 2pm on Saturday.

In May, the station was given a major overhaul, both inside and out, after it was announced by the Government the New Zealand Fire Service would merge with the National Rural Fire Authority and more than 40 rural fire authorities to create Fire and Emergency New Zealand.
Dave Sutherland, of the Oamaru Volunteer Fire Brigade, said the open day would give the public the chance to tour the upgraded station.
“The station has had a complete makeover so we thought we would take the opportunity to open it up to the public.”
Waitaki MP Jacqui Dean will oversee an official opening at 12.30pm, before Exe St is closed at 1pm for a crash scenario demonstration.
Mr Sutherland said the exercise involving a two-car crash with multiple victims was designed to be as realistic as possible.
“The intent with this display is we are starting it off right from the beginning. A lady is actually going to be driving past and be the first on the scene. We’re doing that so if you are first on the scene, you’ll know what you should be looking out for, like if there’s power lines down around the scene, for example.”
A member of the Oamaru Volunteer Fire Brigade will provide commentary throughout the display, which will include information on what details should be provided to emergency services when 111 is called.
“It’s educating people how to handle that situation,” Mr Sutherland said.
“It’s just a big, informative display, but it’ll be pretty real, with fake blood and all the trimmings.”
Other activities planned include firefighters taking part in a combat challenge, coupled with a children’s challenge, an oven-top fire and barrel burning display, a display on how roof kits are used and a fire extinguisher and smoke alarm display and information area.
The brigade’s 1928 Dennis truck and modern appliances will be on show, while regional fire safety officer Stu Ide will also be on hand to answer questions.
The children’s colouring competition which appeared in last week’s Oamaru Mail will be judged.
As part of the upgrade, the station was painted in the organisation’s new colours – denim blue and titanium – while the inside was painted, new carpet laid and plumbing upgraded.
Maintenance work was done on fences and the training room, a breathing apparatus compressor with increased capacity installed and external brickwork sealed.