Is your number up?

By KUE DAVIS

THE Woolgoolga Fire Brigade and Rural Fire Service are pleading with residents to make sure their houses are clearly identified, following a number of confusing call-outs.

Station commander at Woolgoolga Fire Station, Ray Webb, said it is vital that houses are clearly identified to ensure a quick response time.

"When we're looking for a property, we need to be able to see numbers," he said.

"We went to a house fire on Monday, and there was no number we had to explain to other units where the house was.

"Even if you don't have a letter box, you do need some kind of identification that is clearly visible."

NSW Rural Fire Service inspector and community safety officer, Ron Collingridge, said making sure your house is readily identifiable was vital.

"Your number needs to be at eye level and made of reflective material, so we can see it at night," he said.

"A unit can be driving down a road and they can't even get their bearings because none of the houses are numbered. It really could mean the difference between life and death, or saving the building."

Mr Collingridge also said the Rural Number System used in rural areas was absolutely essential in finding properties as quickly as possible.

The logical system allocates numbers to properties according to their distance from the nearest intersection.

For example, property 213 would be 2.13 kilometres along the road.

"It's a system that really is invaluable to emergency services we urge everyone in rural areas to get into contact with council and get a number if they don't already."

President of the Chamber Woolgoolga Chamber of Commerce, Steve Moody, fully supported the plea.

"As a former president of the Rural Fire Service unit in Woolgoolga, I echo the concerns of our fire fighters," he said.

"Unidentified houses are a big problem in rural and street areas, not just for fire fighters, but for all emergency services.

"Proper signage really is very important. We urge people to make sure their house is clearly identified for emergency services to be able to help, you need to help them, too."

n Rural numbers are available from council. For more information either head to the chambers on the corner of Coff and Castle Street, or phone 6648 4000.



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