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Police investigate after fire truck stolen from firefighters

Eli GreenNCA NewsWire
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Camera IconNot Supplied Credit: Supplied

Police are investigating after a fire truck was stolen from firefighters preparing for the upcoming summer season.

Officers were called to the Nethercote rural fire station, about 10km northeast of Eden, at 7:30pm on Monday following reports a fire truck had been stolen.

Firefighters told police that a chainsaw, white hydrant stand, defibrillator, bolt cutters, jerry can and several fire hoses which were in the truck were also stolen.

Detective Sergeant Justin Marks said that an unknown person broke into a padlocked shed at the station between 11:30am on Sunday and 4:30pm on Monday.

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“Once inside they’ve gained access to a utility which is a fully marked Rural Fire Service vehicle equipped with hydrants, suction lines, extinguishers and hoses,” he said

“They’ve stolen it and the vehicle’s whereabouts is currently unknown.

Police are appealing for members of the public to come forward with information.
Camera IconPolice are appealing for members of the public to come forward with information. Credit: Supplied
Police were called to the Nethercote rural fire station after the break in.
Camera IconPolice were called to the Nethercote rural fire station after the break in. Credit: Supplied

“It touches at the heart of our community and when offenders break into RFS sheds which are manned by volunteers, that have done an extraordinary job over the last couple of years, and will likely have a battle on their hands this summer, and take an RFS asset after everything we’ve been through with Black Summer is absolutely disgusting.

“I’m hoping we find the fire truck, find the offender, prosecute that person or persons and put them before the courts.”

Police have established a crime scene and are investigating the circumstances around the threat.

The theft could not come at a worse time as firefighters prepare for the upcoming bushfire season, with experts predicting it will likely be the worst in several years due to hot and dry conditions.

South Coast residents have been warned to expect a high fire threat this year with El Nino bringing increased likelihood of out of control blazes.

The Eden area had already come under fire threat before summer even started, with a massive blaze closing schools and threatening homes in September.

Firies on the South Coast are the latest authorities to be targeted by theft in recent weeks, with robbers targeting lifeguards at Bondi Beach, making off with one of their rescue buggies.

The group of trained lifeguards, made famous on the popular show Bondi Rescue, arrived at work on Friday morning to discover thieves had broken into their viewing tower and stolen vital rescue equipment.

BONDI LIFEGUARDS
Camera IconThieves smashed in a locked roller door to access the buggie. NCA NewsWire/ Dylan Robinson Credit: News Corp Australia
BONDI LIFEGUARDS
Camera IconPolice are still investigating the theft. . NCA NewsWire/ Dylan Robinson Credit: News Corp Australia

Two beach buggies often used in rescue situations were no longer secured inside. The lifeguards found one bogged in the sand on the beach while the other was nowhere to be seen.

“Last night our tower was broken into and one of buggies ended up being bogged on the beach and the other is still missing,” the lifeguards wrote in an Instagram post.

“If anyone in the Bondi area has any information, or seen our missing bike please contact the Bondi police!

“This is an emergency vehicle and we need it back!”

The buggies are used by the lifeguards every day to patrol the beach and to allow the group to quickly make their way across the sand to perform rescues.

Images of the break-in posted on Instagram show that the thieves broke into the locked tower through a roller door, smashing in the metal corner to gain access to the inside of the building.

Originally published as Police investigate after fire truck stolen from firefighters

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