Maryborough fire and Rescue officers were put through their paces during some heavy vehicle rescue training - John Pappas (left).
Photo: Valerie Horton / Fraser Coast Chronicle
Maryborough fire and Rescue officers were put through their paces during some heavy vehicle rescue training - John Pappas (left). Photo: Valerie Horton / Fraser Coast Chronicle Valerie Horton

Firefighters risk lives to save drivers from floodwaters

HERVEY Bay firefighters have had enough.

Queensland Fire and Emergency Service is committed to protecting property and human lives, but members are tired of having to risk their lives to save people from avoidable emergencies.

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Firefighters were called to two floodwater rescues late Friday: one in Torquay and the other, a near-fatal incident at Urangan. All five people were rescued.

Hervey Bay Station Officer John Pappas said: "It most definitely is frustrating.

"This highlights that if it's flooded, forget it," Mr Pappas said.

"Nobody should drive into floodwater. The road can be washed away under the surface, you don't know, but people still think they can get through," he said.

Firefighters first responded to an incident on Torquay Terrace, Torquay, where a woman drove her vehicle into floodwaters.

"She drove into it, couldn't get through then stopped her car," Mr Pappas said.

Bystanders helped, and when out of the water the woman was handed over to police.

Firefighters then fled across the Bay to Urangan's Moolyyir St where a car was washed off the road by 1.5m of water.

"Four people in a small car drove into faster moving floodwater," Mr Pappas said.

"They were recovered from the car but the car was washed away," he said.

"It was deep enough to wash the car off the road and submerge it.

"It could've been a very different ending."

Local State Emergency Services members responded to 11 call-outs as storms lashed the Fraser Coast late Friday night.



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