Rural Fire Service area training support officer Matthew Eckhardt said the theft of the tin from the Irvinebank Tavern was a “spit in the face” for not just the local RFS crew, but for the entire community.
Rural Fire Service area training support officer Matthew Eckhardt said the theft of the tin from the Irvinebank Tavern was a “spit in the face” for not just the local RFS crew, but for the entire community.

‘Spit in the face’: Fire donation tin stolen from tavern

A RURAL firefighter had some stern words for an alleged thief who stole a Rural Fire Service charity tin from a Tablelands venue.

Rural Fire Service area training support officer Matthew Eckhardt said the theft of the tin from the Irvinebank Tavern was a "spit in the face" for not just the local RFS crew, but for the entire community.

"It's sad someone had stolen a community donation tin," Mr Eckhardt said.

"The Rural Fire Service is a community based organisation, we're there to look after communities.

"When something happens in that vein, the community does take a knock."

Sue McFarlane and Graham Green have operated the Irvinebank Tavern since May and hope to make the old mining a live music mecca in the bush. David Anthony photo
Sue McFarlane and Graham Green have operated the Irvinebank Tavern since May and hope to make the old mining a live music mecca in the bush. David Anthony photo

He urged the alleged thief to return the tin as soon as possible.

"I implore them to return the tin - through that, you are protected (from fires)," Mr Eckhardt said.

Owner Sue McFarlane has also pleaded for the tin's return.

"Please return as soon as possible - no charges will be laid," Ms McFarlane said.

Irvinebank was the site of a fast-moving bushfire located at Herberton Petford Road near Jumna Dam last week.

Rural Fire Service area training support officer Matthew Eckhardt.
Rural Fire Service area training support officer Matthew Eckhardt.

The fire was downgraded to "advice" level at the weekend by the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services.

Mr Eckhardt said it was brought under control pretty quickly thanks to the rugged terrain where the fire was burning.

Thick smoke was a hazard as a bushfire raged along the Watsonville-Irvinebank road on New Year’s Day. PHOTO: David Anthony
Thick smoke was a hazard as a bushfire raged along the Watsonville-Irvinebank road on New Year’s Day. PHOTO: David Anthony

 

"Because of the terrain, it was able to be controlled," he said.

"The volunteer crews and local landholders worked extremely well to contain the fire.

"It was a day-by-day action - their actions brought everything under control."

 


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