Impacted Residents Attend Bushfire Debrief

Published on Friday, 25 February 2022 at 11:51:53 AM

A post-incident community meeting was held yesterday exclusively for residents and property owners directly impacted by the Bayview Rise bushfire.

More than 100 impacted residents attended the event at the Somerset Hill Fire Shed on Thursday evening to share their experiences, provide feedback and to hear from authorities and volunteers who worked on the emergency response.

Representatives from DFES, Denmark Police, Shire of Denmark and volunteer brigades met with residents to hear their stories, share their pain and to work together on finding learning outcomes to help tailor future bushfire preparedness, response and recovery.

Denmark Shire President Ceinwen Gearon said the experiences touched on during the evening were confronting.

“This is an incredibly difficult time for our community, particularly for those who suffered damage to their properties and homes,” Cr Gearon said.

“Last night’s meeting was emotionally charged, but I hope those who attended felt like they were heard, that the representatives from DFES, Police and the Shire tried to answer questions to the best of their ability and that lessons learned were voiced and captured.”

“As we move further into the recovery phase and as impacted residents continue to live with spot fires in their paddocks and smouldering bushland near their homes, the Shire of Denmark team will continue to offer support where we can.”

Last night, the Shire of Denmark Deputy CEO David King was pleased to announce the Shire had confirmed volunteer organisation BlazeAid would be coming to Denmark soon.

BlazeAid volunteers will provide the human-power to assist with the removal and rebuilding of damaged fencing.

“Right now, the Shire is managing a damaged fencing register to capture the amount of fencing assistance required and when BlazeAid arrives, their coordinator will take over to manage the volunteering effort,” Mr King said.

“In the meantime, we’re encouraging farmers to get materials ready to go so when the volunteers arrive, they can get to work as quickly as possible on getting new fences up.”

The Shire of Denmark is working on locking in a date for a debrief meeting for the entire community, in addition to a thank a volunteer event which will be a chance to recognise the incredible efforts of emergency services and other local volunteers who contributed to the firefighting and recovery effort.

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