Helping the Community Beat the Heat

As a Lieutenant with the Country Fire Authority (CFA), AE Smith’s Jason Harcourt has an important leadership role to play in the community

28 Apr 2014
 

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During January, Jason was released from his normal duties at AE Smith so he could bolster CFA stand-by fire fighting crews, substantially reducing response times. Jason is grateful for AE Smith’s contribution of his time to the CFA

He oversees operation of two local CFA fire stations at Lilydale and Churnside on the suburban fringe of Melbourne. These two stations are manned by over 50 volunteers and respond to up to 400 distress calls a year.

During the recent spate of Victorian bushfires earlier this year, Jason was on high alert, responding to fires threatening the outer suburbs of Melbourne and joining CFA crews as far away as the Grampians to protect life, homes and livestock.

“You can’t plan a bushfire, so there is a lot of unknown”, says Jason, who carries a pager with him 24 hours a day. When a distress call goes out, available volunteers have just four minutes to respond. But extreme weather events are treated differently says Jason, “When there’s a bushfire, it’s all hands on deck, strike teams are required from one to seven days.”

During January, Jason was released from his normal duties at AE Smith so he could bolster CFA stand-by fire fighting crews, substantially reducing response times. Jason is grateful for AE Smith’s contribution of his time to the CFA.

“AE Smith are helping the local community by making me available to support others.”