1980 - 1989

1989

Bob Otton passes away

1988

November - Tathra Bush Fire Brigade - AGM - elected officers: G. Pauline (Captain); G. Brittliff, J. Bartlett, D. Cook, R. Kermode, E. Waterson (Deputy Captains); J. Bartlett (Chairman)

1987

September - Tathra Bush Fire Brigade - AGM - elected officers: G. Pauline (Captain); G. Brittliff, J. Bartlett, C. Mullach, B. Talbot, E. Waterson (Deputy Captains); Bob Otton (Chairman - Bob's 44th AGM)

1986

August - Tathra Bush Fire Brigade - AGM - elected officers: G. Pauline (Captain); G. Brittliff, J. Bartlett, C. Mullach, R. Kermode, E. Waterson (Deputy Captains); Bob Otton (Chairman)

1985

July - Tathra Bush Fire Brigade - AGM - elected officers: G. Brittliff (Captain); G. Pauline, M. Peters, I. Stafford, C. Mullach, J. Bartlett, (Deputy Captains); Bob Otton (Chairman)

1984

Brigade members attend fires at Bemboka - 7000 acres burnt

November - Tathra Bush Fire Brigade - AGM - elected officers: G. Gregson (Captain); J. Bartlett, C. Mullach, G. Brittliff, Gordon Pauline, Bob Barker, (Deputy Captains); Bob Otton (Chairman)

1983

October - Tathra Bush Fire Brigade - AGM - elected officers: J. Thompson (Captain); M. Peters, C. Mullach, I. Rawlins, P. Preo, G. Brittliff, J. Bartlett (Deputy Captains); Bob Otton (Chairman)

1981

Bush Fire Bulletin Vol. 3 No. 2 (Autumn, 1981) Early Fire Season on Far South Coast

Report from Phil Collins – Bega Valley F.C.O. 

Following a period of two years of consistent dry weather, with rainfall below half the average for the whole of the Far South Coast area, the 1980 fire season began in earnest on 11th August. Fires were hard to control and burnt fiercely at night.

Owing to the extremely dry conditions and the number of fires causing difficulties, fire restrictions were invoked in the then Imlay Shire on 22nd August.

During September-October serious fires occurred in seven different Brigade areas. Some of these outbreaks occurred on days of extreme wind force — up to 100 kilometres per hour. The winds were mainly north to west. Even though the district was and still is experiencing the worst drought in history, fires were very difficult to contain in open country.

There is no doubt that an aerial H.R. block burnt in March, 1980, was a major factor in the control of a large fire in the Tantawangalo Mountain area. November, 18th, saw a fire starting at approximately 1500 hours. The day was one of total fire ban. Conditions were extreme: 45° C; 9% R.H. with  north winds up to 110 kilometres per hour. At midday the Fire Danger Rating was 96. The fire was quickly seen to be reaching uncontrollable proportions and Wonboyn village was in the path of the holocaust. Fire brigades and a National Parks and Wildfire Service units were despatched to Wonboyn to protect the village. Owing to the excellent work of all concerned there was no serious fire damage to the village. One house was demolished by the wind storm when the fire completely circled Wonboyn. A 41 F was declared at 2115 on the 18th November to 1600 on 23rd November.

Navy men from H.M.A.S. Albatross arrived on Wednesday, at midday. They were working with Brigades, Forestry, and National Parks personnel by the afternoon. The work done by these men was most helpful in securing and patrolling the perimeters. This fire burnt 46 000 hectares in 5—6 hours. There is an enormous amount of work to be done after a fire of this size. The work would have taken much longer without the services of these men. Air Force personnel and helicopters rendered great assistance in plotting the area, checking fire lines, reconnaissance, and patrol flights. They were most helpful and easy to work with.

By 23rd November all perimeters were secure, water supplies had been replenished, Navy and Air Force men had returned to their bases on Saturday morning. The 41 F was lifted at 1600 hours on this day. Storms just before Christmas changed the weather pattern to a less dangerous situation. Temperatures were lower and humidity higher, with a shift to the northeast in wind behaviour particularly on the coast.

There were eight recorded lightning strikes in December and January. All of these were relatively easy to deal with. At present (January) water is very scarce in most areas on the Far South Coast. The area will be facing a high fire risk until good soaking rains fall.

The drought continues and is making things very hard for the farming and pastoral communities.

October - Tathra Bush Fire Brigade - AGM - elected officers: J. Thompson (Captain); M. Peters, C. Mullach, G. Gregson (Deputy Captains); Bob Otton (Chairman)

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How to find us!

About us

Tathra Volunteer Rural Fire Brigade is just one of the many Brigades that make up the NSW Rural Fire Service. We are a volunteer Brigade operating since 1945 on the Far South Coast of NSW.


Tathra Volunteer Rural Fire Brigade

Bega Road
Tathra, NSW, 2550

0429 858 123
tathrafi@tathrafirebrigade.org.au