Avoca resident and Forest Fire Management Victoria firefighter John Moser has safely returned home from helping battle devastating fires in America.
Mr Moser joined 188 Australian and New Zealand emergency service workers in battling wild fires in Northern California for five weeks. On his return, John said the experience is something that will live with him forever.
“We first landed in Boise, Idaho where the control centre for the California fires is based. We received a briefing about the local topography, weather and fire behaviour,” Mr Moser said.
“From Boise, we were immediately sent to Redding, California for another briefing.
“At this briefing they warned us of things to watch out for such as wildlife and other threats to our safety. To my great surprise, the biggest threat was not cougars or bears, but marijuana growers protecting their crops.”
While battling the blaze, Mr Moser said he worked directly on the fire line as task force leader in charge of the hazardous tree felling crew which consisted of up to four people.
“The shift lengths were 14 days and up to 14 hours a day,” he said.
For more on this story see Page 5 of The Advertiser, Tuesday, October 9.