Safety checks pay off

Brad Hewitt and Tim Thistleton were on a routine Home Fire Safety Check when they knocked on Ted Blewitt’s, aged 91, door to check his smoke alarm was in order. His smoke detectors weren’t working, so the firefighters replaced them and thought nothing more of it.

Eight weeks later, an emergency call came through to the station reporting a fire at Mr Blewitt’s house.

Mr Blewitt had been at his neighbour Lois McKenzie’s house when he heard the sirens. He checked for fire in the main part of the house, before checking the bedroom.

There he discovered a fire, caused by an overloaded powerboard.

He was able to rush back to Ms McKenzie’s home, where she called emergency services to report the incident. The firefighters were able to extinguish the blaze quickly, and contain the damage to the bedroom.

This week, Fire & Rescue Comissioner Paul Baxter presented a community safety excellence award to the Braidwood Fire Station in recognition of the team’s excellent work.

They know that he is elderly and they are so helpful – they are a wonderful asset to the local community.

Joan Hosking

“It was good that we approached this fellow, and it sort of obviously saved his house if not his life,” said firefighter Brad Hewitt.

“It was a minor fire, but obviously the detector alerted him before it became a major fire.”

Mr Blewitt’s daughter, Joan Hosking could not praise Braidwood’s firefighter’s highly enough.

“They were absolutely wonderful,” Ms Hosking said.

“They have visited him a number of times in the past and they take really good care of him, check his smoke alarms and change the batteries.”

“They know that he is elderly and they are so helpful – they are a wonderful asset to the local community.”