Newlands Volunteer Fire Brigade

Fire Calls

As the brigade is part of the New Zealand Fire Service it is possible for it to be mobilised to any part of the country. Not all calls involve fire fighting. Often the call is to respond to another station to standby while that station is at a call and there is a requirement that there be an appliance at that station for immediate turnout due to the nature of the risks in that area. Newlands have done standby's at Kilbirnie, Newtown, Headquarters, Thorndon, Khandallah, Johnsonville. Porirua, Petone and Lower Hutt stations, responding to incidents if required from those stations. Standbys are often lengthy and generally not looked forward to, as they can become quite boring - especially when TV closed down for the night.

An example of one particular period of standbys interspersed with fire calls occurred in January 1981:-

1132 hours Newlands on standby on station due to multiple calls in the city

1142 hours Stand down received

1700 hours Newlands on standby at Thorndon station

1724 hours Newlands respond from Thorndon to gorse fire at Island Bay

2050 hours Newlands return to Newlands and stand down

2344 hours Newlands on standby at Newlands station

? hours Newlands respond to reported car fire, Ohariu Road, Johnsonville. Found to be malicious false alarm. Newlands return to Johnsonville station to standby

01 38 hours Newlands proceed from Johnsonville to Thorndon station to standby

0502 hours Newlands return to Newlands and stand down

Another example - March 1983:-

2052 hours Newlands respond to standby Thorndon station

2158 hours Newlands respond from City station to Island Bay to investigate gorse fire. Fire found to be one already being fought. Newlands return to City station

0105 hours Newlands respond to Island Bay to relieve crews who have been engaged for some time

0724 hours Newlands return to Newlands and stand down.

However as an indication of responses to other areas, the brigade has responded to Makara, Ohariu Valley, Karori, Crofton Downs, Johnsonville, Island Bay, Hataitai, Owhiro Bay, Brooklyn, Aro Valley, Kilbirnie, Newtown, Kingston, Strathmore, Tawa, Porirua, Upper Hutt and many in the City itself. There was a period when a large number of earthquake-risk buildings were being demolished within the City. This brought a very busy period for the Fire Service in Wellington, resulting in Newlands often being called into the City. Another busy period resulted from the actions of several arsonists who caused a number of fires in the Kelburn and Johnsonville areas before their arrest and sentencing. Both involved the Newlands brigade to some degree.