Published: Midland Express

Volunteer fire fighters and local government leaders will be briefed next week on the Australian trial of the Firewatch early detection technology.

Member for McEwen Fran Bailey will host the briefi ng session in Healesville on Wednesday morning.

It has been through the international investigations by Fran following Black Saturday of early detection technology that the Commonwealth Government is funding the trial over summer.

Following a visit to Germany in July to see Firewatch in operation, Ms Bailey presented a compelling case to Prime Minister Kevin Rudd to fund Australian trials of early detection technology.

“Firewatch uses tower-based digital sensor technology and sophisticated software to detect the presence of smoke day and night. It is able to cover distances up to 40 km depending upon topography.”

Fran said the permanent installation of early detection sensors in Australia could assist in reducing the severity of future bushfi res.

“Early detection technology is one way we can better protect our communities and our people,” Ms Bailey said.