Crib Point and Somerville bushfires

On behalf of our community I would like to publicly thank our local emergency services workers, whose brave efforts kept our community safe yet again as they fought to control recent fires in Crib Point and Somerville. We are very fortunate to live in a state that is protected by excellent firefighters and outstanding brigades. This is the second year in a row that Crib Point lives and property have been saved from fierce fires by the supreme efforts of a group of people and a change of weather.

My community's gratitude goes to the 150 Country Fire Authority (CFA) volunteer firefighters who, supported by 50 fire tankers and three firefighting aircraft, fought bravely to contain a fast-moving and out-of-control bushfire that started in the Esplanade area of Crib Point. The fire, whipped up by sudden north-easterly winds, burnt through approximately 85 hectares and at one stage threatened more than 20 homes and the HMAS Cerberus naval base. While one house was lost and two others were badly damaged, the quick actions and bravery of our firefighters prevented the fire doing a great deal more damage. The cause of the fire is being investigated.

This week our brave CFA volunteers responded yet again to a fast-moving and threatening fire in Somerville. Again it was the brave volunteers who stood between my community and disaster. Victoria's volunteer firefighters have a proud history of protecting our state and assisting Victorians during times of need. We are grateful for their outstanding support again this fire season.

On behalf of my community I commend our local and neighbouring CFA volunteers for their brave and tireless work and for yet again putting themselves between our community and danger. I encourage the government to move quickly to introduce the legislation that is going to give protection to all firefighters across Victoria. I would also like to thank everyone who came to the assistance of members of the Crib Point family who lost their home and belongings. Particular thanks goes to Wendy and Terry Kelly from in Victoria Street, Hastings.