Tasmania, Australia — The Minister for Environment, Parks, Heritage and the Arts, Michelle OByrne today said that interstate researchers would use a fuel reduction burn at Ansons Bay in the States north-east this weekend to conduct physiological research on fire fighters.
Ms OByrne said the research, was part of a project funded by the Bushfire Cooperative Research Centre.
Researchers from Victorias Deakin University will monitor the heart rates and movements of nine Tasmania Fire Service volunteers as part of a study of fatigue and injury management.
The fire fighters will be fitted with physiological monitors and GPS units which will track the distance they travel in their fire fighting efforts.
Each individual fire fighter will also be filmed continuously on video.
The research is aimed at determining the effects of fitness, stress, fatigue and crew management on the health, safety and wellbeing of fire fighters working on bushfire suppression, Ms OByrne said.
TFS Acting Chief Officer Mike Brown said with our 5000 fire fighters across the State, it was important that such areas as fitness requirements and fatigue management are monitored and considered.
This area of research is just one of the benefits that the Bushfire Cooperative Research Centre program is providing for Tasmanias fire fighting agencies.
The fuel reduction burn at Ansons Bay is a cooperative effort between the Parks and Wildlife Service, the Tasmania Fire Service and Forestry Tasmania.
Parks and Wildlife Service fire operations manager Adrian Pyrke said about 40 personnel, including the researchers, would be involved in the burn.
The burn at Ansons Bay is being undertaken for strategic wildfire control and to provide asset protection.
About 170 hectares of coastal heath and dry sclerophyll forest will be burnt to the west of the Ansons Bay township.